Abide with me: fast falls the eventide

Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. Luke 24:29




ABIDE with me: fast falls the eventide ;
The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide:
When other helpers fail, and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.

2 Swift to its close ebbs out life's little day;
Earth's joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.

3 I need Thy presence every passing hour;
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter's power ?
Who like Thyself my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, O abide with me.

4 I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless:
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death's sting? where, grave,
thy victory ? I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.

5 Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom, and point me to the skies:
Heaven's morning breaks, and earth's vain shadows flee:
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.

This hymn was written by the Rev. Henry Francis Lyte (see under No. 5) a few weeks before his death, and had eight verses in all. His daughter tells us that on September 4, 1847, he preached for the last time in the village church, having been ordered to a warmer climate as his only chance of living through the winter; and on the evening of that day he placed the hymn in the hands of one of his family. It is the prayer of one who feels the night of death closing around him, and is not afraid while the Master stays beside him. Mr. Lyte died at Nice, Italy, on the 20th of November following.