I became aware of William Gadsby and his works about a couple of years ago through a site I found on the internet, what I read interested me a great deal, so much so that I purchased B.A. Ramsbottom’s book “William Gadsby” published by Gospel Standard Trust Publications. Gadsby was a faithful pastor and hymnwriter and made a great impact on church life in his day, that impact remains to this present day.
This is what William Gadsby wrote on the subject “Why did Christ Die”.
“According to some people, Christ died to give all a chance of being saved! I do not know that I hate anything more in my soul than to hear that. It makes Jesus Christ so little that He should do so much, and after all only to get us a chance of being saved. Why, if a man is set up in business, you see how often it happens that he fails in it; and if man cannot manage the paltry things of time and sense without being insolvent, what will he do with eternal realities? And if you come a little closer, when God “made man upright” and he had no sinful nature, what did he do with his innocence? He lost it all! And yet poor presumptuous man has the vanity to think you and I could manage the chance of being saved. What an insult it is to the Lord Jesus Christ to fix the eternal honour of God upon chance, and that chance to be managed by a poor sinful creature who is tumbling into half a dozen holes every hour of his life! NO, NO. Thanks be to God for immortal realities and certainties. WHAT IS SAID CONCERNING WHAT CHRIST HAS DONE?He has “put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself;” He has “finished transgression and made an end of sin;” He has “redeemed us from all iniquity;” He has “redeemed us from the curse of the law,” from destruction and from the power of the devil; He has “obtained eternal redemption for us;” He has “redeemed us to God.” To the honour of the Eternal Trinity it is said, not that the redeemed shall have a chance, but that the redeemed shall “come to Zion with songs, and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” The Lord Jesus Christ has done this “great” work; and He has gone to heaven shouting “Victory,” for “God is gone up with a shout; the Lord with the sound of a trumpet.” He rose from the grave as a demonstrative proof that sin was destroyed, law satisfied, God honoured, His people eternally and everlastingly saved. And the immortal honours of God unite in their salvation; therefore, He ever lives at the right hand of the Father to make intercession”.
To me one of William Gadsby’s greatest hymns has to be:
IMMORTAL HONOURS REST ON JESUS’ HEAD.
Immortal honours rest on Jesus’ head;
My God, my portion, and my Living Bread;
In Him I live, upon Him cast my care;
He saves from death, destruction, and despair.
He is my Refuge in each deep distress;
The Lord my strength and glorious righteousness;
Through floods and flames He leads me safely on,
And daily makes His sovereign goodness known.
My every need He richly will supply;
Nor will His mercy ever let me die;
In Him there dwells a treasure all divine,
And matchless grace has made that treasure mine.
O that my soul could love and praise Him more,
His beauties trace, His majesty adore;
Live near His heart, upon His bosom lean;
Obey His voice, and all His will esteem.