The deep interest I have always taken in the subject of hymnology, and my warm personal affection for the author of this volume, are my warrant for bespeaking for it a warm and hearty welcome. If ever a man was raised and endowed for a special work by our Divine Master, that man is Ira D. Sankey. His work has been of a twofold character. Before his day psalms and hymns and spiritual songs had always been an important part of the services of religious worship throughout Christendom.
But he introduced a peculiar style of popular hymns which are calculated to awaken the careless, to melt the hardened, and to guide inquiring souls to the Lord Jesus Christ. In the next place, he sang these powerful revival-hymns himself, and became as effective a preacher of the gospel of salvation by song as his associate, Dwight L. Moody, was by sermon. The multitudes who heard his rich and inspiring voice in ”The Ninety and Nine,” "Jesus of Nazareth Passeth By” and ”When the Mists Have Rolled Away” will testify to the prodigious power with which the Holy Spirit gave him utterance. While he has had many successors, he was the pioneer.
This position which our beloved Brother Sankey holds before the whole Christian world fitted him to prepare such a volume as this valuable addition to hymnology. It is the simple but sublime story of the quickening, converting and sanctifying power of sacred song. It adds a new and thrilling chapter to the triumph of the Cross. It is a precious legacy by a faithful veteran of Jesus Christ to his fellow-soldiers in all lands who are battling for the cause and crown of the glorious Captain of our salvation, and who”wait for his appearing."
THEODORE L. CUYLER.
BROOKLYN, New YORK,