In this Easter season, it is appropriate to write about an Easter hymn. But I found very few Easter hymns written by women. Jessie Brown Pounds was the exception. Jessie was featured in my book, Sisters in Song, but the song I wrote about was “Beautiful Isle of Somewhere”. As I said in the book, she wrote over 400 gospel songs. In going through my recent hymnal purchases, she is indeed included quite a bit in the older hymnals, less so in the more recent ones. But the current hymnbook for the Disciples of Christ, The Chalice Hymnal, includes “I Know That My Redeemer Liveth”. I characterized her as a Disciple on steroids in a presentation last fall. She apparently lived, breathed, married into and died in this denomination. I observed that the various denominational hymnals do feature their own and this is no exception. This is a great Easter song which first appeared in the Easter cantata, “Hope’s Messenger” in 1893, then later as a congregational hymn in The Praise Hymnal in 1896. Several other hymns by others have this same title, based on Job 19:25. This text was also included by Handel in his oratorio, Messiah. Jessie’s Easter message is undeniable. The tune, by her collaborator of over three decades, James Fillmore, makes the message even more memorable.
I know that my Redeemer liveth and on the earth again shall stand.
I know eternal life he giveth, that grace and power are in his hand.
I know, I know that Jesus liveth and on the earth again shall stand.
I know, I know that life he giveth, that grace and power are in his hand.