More Love to Thee, O Christ Lyrics and Story

More Love to Thee O Christ Hymn Lyrics

Author: Elizabeth Prentiss

More love to Thee, O Lord,
More love to Thee!
Hear Thou the prayer I make
On bended knee;
This is my earnest plea:
More love, O Lord, to Thee,
More love to Thee,
More love to Thee!

Once earthly joy I craved,
Sought peace and rest;
Now Thee alone I seek,
Give what is best;
This all my prayer shall be:
More love, O Lord, to Thee,
More love to Thee,
More love to Thee!

Let sorrow do its work,
Send grief and pain;
Sweet are Thy messengers,
Sweet their refrain,
When they can sing with me,
More love, O Lord, to Thee,
More love to Thee,
More love to Thee!

Then shall my latest breath
Whisper Thy praise;
This be the parting cry
My heart shall raise;
This still its prayer shall be:
More love, O Lord, to Thee,
More love to Thee,
More love to Thee!

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More Love to Thee O Christ Hymn Story

The words of this song were composed by Elizabeth Prentiss (1818 – 1878). The music was added by William Doane (1832 – 1915) who composed his own songs and also provided music to many of Fanny Crosby’s songs.

Elizabeth Prentiss was married to Dr. George L Prentiss, a Presbyterian minister. He later became a professor of homiletics at Union Theological Seminary in New York.

His wife, Elizabeth was a famous author and composer of poetry during that time and authored the book, Stepping Heavenward, which sold over two hundred thousand copies in the US.

Elizabeth Prentiss - More love to thee hymn
Elizabeth Prentiss

Her life was, however, full of difficulties including a body wracked with pain that made her an invalid. She is reported to have said while going through all this, “…and that it is a wonderful mercy to be allowed even to suffer if thereby one can glorify Him.”

This song we are sharing today also arose out of tragedy for the Prentiss family. It was written after the Prentiss had just lost two children one after another in a brief period of time. The song, therefore, was created out of deep grief.

According to Elizabeth, the words were inspired by Sarah Adam’s hymn, “Nearer, My God, to Thee”. As she grieved for her children she meditated on the struggles of Jacob as found in Genesis 28:10-22 and found “Nearer, My God To Thee” to be very comforting.

The story in Genesis 28 is about Jacob’s dream of a ladder from heaven on which angels were ascending and descending. This was when Jacob was running away from his brother after stealing his birthright.

It was a tough time for Jacob, and he might have doubted if God still cared for him. Therefore, this dream helped strengthen his faith.

It is said that Prentiss completed the hymn in one evening but did not show it to anybody for over a decade.

Elizabeth passed away at the age of 59 in 1878 in Dorset, Vermont, and her song “More Love to Thee” was sung at her funeral. This song, “More Love to Thee” was composed by her following the serious and near-fatal illness of her daughter Minnie.

In the preface of the book, The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss are her words, “Much of my experience of life has cost me a great price and I wish to use it for strengthening and comforting other souls.”

Reading verse four of this song below you will understand what she was going through as she writes, let sorrow do its work…..

More To Love thee YouTube Video

Below is a video featuring this song.

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