Ebenezer, Our Stone of Help

During this time of national uncertainty and upheaval, my mind has made its way back to a song I wrote twenty years ago called, “Ebenezer.” Most people associate this word with a grumpy old man in England who hated Christmas. However, “Ebenezer” is a wonderful word taken from a great story in the Bible. 
 

Here is the background of the story:

Following the death of Joshua and his generation, the Bible states in Judges, 2:10, “And there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord, nor yet the work which He had done for Israel.” The spiritual state of Israel descended to a very low ebb, the people chose idolatry over following God, and the ark of the covenant was stolen. 

In the book of I Samuel, chapter 7, we are told the people began to lament after God. In other words, they began to long for the special relationship their nation had formerly experienced with Him. They wanted to return to Him. So the prophet, Samuel, gave a speech to the whole nation and admonished them to get rid of their idols if they were serious about returning to God and to serve Him alone.

A great revival occurred, and the nation repented. However, this was followed by a crisis. The enemies of Israel gathered together to battle against them, and the nation was filled with fear. Samuel told them to fight, and he would pray for them.

To make a long story short, verse 10 says, “But the Lord thundered with a great thunder on that day against the Philistines and confused them, so that they were routed before Israel.” The Israeli people won a great victory that day against all odds. 

When the dust settled, Samuel then took a stone and set it as a memorial, naming it, “Ebenezer.” “Ebenezer” means “Stone of Help.” Samuel then stated, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.” From that day onward, every time the Jewish people would look at that “stone of help” called “Ebenezer”, they would be reminded of God's faithfulness in times of crisis. Guess what? He's still our “Ebenezer.” Our “Stone of Help.” So I wrote this song, “Ebenezer”. 

 

Ebenezer                                                                                                                                                                                                      
Words and Music by Lawrence Chewning 


Last night I closed my eyes and viewed an awesome scene 
I saw a holy place from bygone days, and I asked, “What could this mean?” 
There was a stone on the ground, and words were written down 
I strained my eyes to see 
And it said, 

“Ebenezer. Thus far the Lord has helped me.” 
“Ebenezer. Thus far the Lord has helped me.” 

Time after time it seems I learn the same things over again 
When my back is to the wall, and it seems like all is about to cave in 
Then I cry out in despair, and He is there, just like so many times before 

And my heart cries, 
“Ebenezer. Thus far the Lord has helped me.” 
“Ebenezer. Thus far the Lord has helped me.” 

Now I'm standing at the crossroads, and this one thing I ask 
I long to return to lessons learned along the ancient path 
Somebody asked, “Where are you going? Tell me, why are you walking so fast?” 
I said, “I've got to get back to the place of faith. It's the only thing that's ever gonna last.” 

Last night I closed my eyes and saw a holy place 
There was a stone on the ground, and I could hear a sound coming from heavenly space 
It said, “The stone rejected by the builders has become the cornerstone.” 

And my soul cries, 
“Ebenezer. Thus far the Lord has helped me.”                                                                     
“Ebenezer. Thus far the Lord has helped me.” 

I run to my stone of help. 
Jesus is my stone of help. 
Jesus, You're my stone of help. 

WORDS AND MUSIC BY 
Copyright 2000 by CHEWNING TUNES (ASCAP)

 

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