Bill and Gloria Gather’s song “Because He Lives” turns 50 this year. There’s a great write-up from Baptist Press about the song’s history and impact.
For this week’s DHD, I am featuring six Gaither songs that were impactful in my life. It’s fascinating to think, during the 1970s, songs by the Gathers were contemporary. Today, Christian music has a totally different presentation, which is fine because God enjoys songs that reflect Him and share a Gospel message.
Maybe your favorite Gaither songs are different from mine—there’s nearly 500 of them. And there’s definitely more I could add (alas, half dozen=six. That’s the rule!). Please share what Gaither song(s) are special to you.
- Because He Lives
It’s an awesome song. The first verse is a great summary of the Gospel and the early ministry of Jesus (He came to love, heal and forgive).
The second verse has a relatable element, and Gloria said they wrote the song when their son Benjy was born (How sweet to hold a newborn baby) and wanted to offer a “song of hope” not only for them but for others.
As I’m in the middle of writing this blog, I realized I may have been able to come up with six points just on this song alone.
For sure, “Because He Lives” would be considered by many to be the Gaithers’ most popular and appreciated song.
- It is Finished
This song is more complex than “Because He Lives” yet just as powerful. You need to read Gloria’s telling of the history of this song.
The reason I say the song is complex is how it doesn’t feature the chorus as often as the chorus is sung in other songs. It basically has two verses, and the first one is longer than the second. But when the chorus is sung, it always gives me chills.
What isn’t complex is the message of the song. It is quite clear and easy to comprehend. It’s a ballad about what happened 2,000 years ago but still applies to every person who needs to know “the battle is over” and “Jesus is Lord.”
- The King is Coming
I remember joking about this song when I was younger. I think it was due to how many times the phrase “The King is Coming” is sung throughout the song.
The song’s history involves Bill and Gloria having dinner with two friends. They were talking about a sermon delivered by a mutual friend who ended his preaching walking through the congregation shouting “The King is coming! The King is coming!”
As Christians, we do believe that Christ will return, and as the song proclaims, “Praise God, He’s coming for me!”
- He Touched Me
This is another song of which I would make silly references during in my juvenile years. Basically, I’d be overdramatic when somebody touched me and sing the chorus—“He touched me. OooOooh he touched me!”
“He Touched Me” is a powerful, poetic response of a born-again Christian, sharing what happened after they made a profession of faith in Christ.
This song comes to mind whenever I read Luke 8:40-48, about the woman suffering from bleeding touching the end of Jesus’ robe. “’Who touched me?’ Jesus asked” (8:45).
The Bible story doesn’t directly reflect the song lyrics, but one thing is certain about both; the woman could say or sing “He touched me and made me whole.”
- Something Beautiful
This would be one of the simpler songs the Gaithers ever wrote. I don’t know the history of it, and only recently did I know there was more than just the chorus of this song.
It’s easy to sing and was rather popular in my elementary years. It seems like it was sung often when I was in children’s choir and other settings of children singing at church.
Even now, I love how it can be the personal testimony of someone surrendering all their brokenness and strife. “He made something beautiful of my life.”
- The Family of God
Another simple song, it was a regular favorite during worship services when people would stand and greet each other.
Two things that always could be found in all, if not most, of Gaither song: Jesus and Christian doctrine. “The Family of God” is simple and easy to sing, but it also holds a powerful message, referencing Rom. 8:17, that we are “joint-heirs with Jesus.”
Please share with me what Gaither songs are your favorite!