The Solid Rock

On Christ The Solid Rock I Stand

“My Hope is Built On Nothing Less” also known as “The Solid Rock” is a hymn written in 1834 by Edward Mote to describe the Christian experience. The music to this well-known song was written by William Bradbury. Although this song was written long ago, the words still represent accurately the personal experience of true Christians all over the world. An honest person has to acknowledge that many of the influential powers in society promote the building of lives on sinking sand; however, there IS a solid rock on which to stand, and that Rock is Jesus Christ. As the chorus of this song says, ALL other ground is sinking sand. Simply put, to build on ANYTHING other than Christ is sinking sand. 

Verse 1: My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus name.

For a Christian, or believer and follower of Christ and His teachings, this verse resonates with them. After a period of following Christ, they learn that there is no other foundation worthy to build our hope on than Jesus’ blood. The phrase Jesus’ blood is used here to represent everything in the atonement to include: salvation from sin and self and healing for our mind, body and soul. A righteous life is the only way to display the application of the blood of Christ. When we believe Christ and have His blood applied to our heart, a righteous life will follow and form the basis or foundation for a person’s hope. There are many things that look good (money, fortune, fame, relationships, education), but a true Christian dare not put their hope in anything else – only fully lean on Jesus which means to embody His teachings, which are found in the word of God.

Verse 2: When darkness veils his lovely face, I rest on his unchanging grace. In every high and stormy gale, my anchor holds within veil.

When darkness hides the lovely face of Jesus, we can rest on His unchanging grace! As evidenced by the testimonies contained in the Word of God, and the many, many testimonies of Saints throughout the ages of time, we can know with confidence that even when we cannot see the face of Jesus, or feel His presence, we can rest in the knowledge of knowing that He IS there. Regardless of how stormy it may get, how dark the night and how the winds may blow in our life, our hope can be a powerful anchor until the storm is past, and we can see God again. Many of us have experienced feeling that anchor pull tight and hold us at times when we felt completely helpless in the circumstances of our lives. What an awesome feeling, when divine reassurance floods over our soul and we feel Him hold us tight!

Verse 3: His oath, his covenant, his blood, support me in the whelming flood. When all around my soul gives way He then is all my hope and stay.

In the times that a Christian is feeling overwhelmed by the flood of pain, sorrow, suffering due to cares of life and concerns, the promises of God, the covenant and the blood – and all it represents – become a life jacket of sorts that enables us to stay afloat when without those things we would not be able in our own strength to save ourselves. It is at those times where we often come to the place that not only is Christ all we have, we find that He is all we need!

In order to have this support a person must be familiar with the promises, the covenant, and the power of the blood to have the support of them. We encourage you to dig into the Word of God through study, and attend a congregation of the Church that Christ built (Matthew 16:18).

Verse 4: When he shall come with trumpet sound, O may I then in him be found, Dressed in his righteousness alone, faultless to stand before the throne!

The most important day of anyone’s existence will be the day we all stand before God and give an account of our life. The Bible teaches in 1 Corinthians 15:52 of a day that He will come with trumpet sound, and the desire of every God-fearing person should be to be found faultless of God on that day! This is really our ultimate goal in life, and it is that which all our primary efforts should be working toward as we go through our lives. No matter how “good” a life we may build for ourselves here on earth – beautiful homes, comfortable incomes, worldly possessions in abundance, surrounded by loved ones, etc. – none of this will matter at all if we are found with fault by God on Judgment Day! 

Chorus: On Christ the solid rock, I stand; All other ground is sinking sand, all other ground is sinking sand.

In a world where everything is constantly changing around us – fads, society’s expectations, what things are considered acceptable or unacceptable, etc. – there is only one constant, one absolutely firm foundation on which we can build our lives and be unfailingly confident that it will stand the test of time. That one true foundation is Jesus Christ. To build our lives on or around anything else is foolish, indeed, because anything else – no matter what it is – will eventually fail us somehow. 

Jesus told a parable in Matthew 7:24 - 29 about a wise man and a foolish man who both built houses. The wise man built his house on a rock for the foundation, and the foolish man built his house on the sand. Both houses were eventually subjected to storms, and the wise man’s house withstood the storm because of its solid foundation. The foolish man’s house, though, fell down in the storm because its foundation shifted and the walls couldn’t take that pressure. In the same way, if we build our lives around anything or anyone in this world, there will eventually come a time in our lives when whatever it is we have built on will fail to provide what we need. Here are just a couple of examples: 

  1. If we count on our riches to sustain us, sooner or later they will fail to meet our need. Solomon recognized this in Proverbs 11:28 when he said, “He that trusteth in his riches shall fall.” There are, indeed, some things that money can’t buy! When a loved one dies, money is no comfort; it cannot supply that need. When stressful circumstances occur at work or even at home, money cannot supply the need of relief from the stress. When health declines and an incurable disease strikes, money cannot purchase the services of a doctor who can stop death from coming. 
  2. If we count on our loved ones (spouse, parents, children, close friends, etc.) to always be the answer, or to have the answer, sooner or later, this too, will fail. Sometimes we will face circumstances in life where our loved ones cannot help us. They may not have the answer, or be able to provide what is needed, no matter how much they desire to do so. Our loved ones are human, so sometimes they may fail us by making a mistake or misjudgment. They may end up hurting us, just when we need them the most. 

But there is one foundation we can build on that will always be able to supply our need – and that is Jesus Christ! He can (and does) supply physical needs for His people. He can (and does) supply emotional needs by comforting us when we are in need of comfort. He can (and does) divinely heal when His Saints pray in faith believing. And even when it is His will to call one of His children home, He can (and does) truly make the time of their passing a time of hope – because His faithful child will be going to their eternal reward of heaven! 

What a beautiful song this hymn is, and how comforting are the descriptions it gives of the Christian experience! You, too, can experience the hope and security of building on the Rock, Christ Jesus. If you will come to Him in true repentance and Godly sorrow, He will be YOUR Rock, YOUR firm foundation that will carry you through whatever you may face for the rest of your life – and your hope will sustain you because you will experience for yourself that HE IS FAITHFUL!