Day 10

Nothing but the Blood

from the reading plan

Exodus 24:3-8, Romans 5:6-11, Hebrews 9:15-22

The hymn “Nothing but the Blood” was composed by Robert Lowry (1826-1899), a university professor and Baptist preacher from New England.

Although an accomplished musician, Lowry wanted most to be known as a preacher. He said, “Music, with me has been a side issue… I would rather preach a gospel sermon to an appreciative audience than write a hymn. I have always looked upon myself as a preacher and felt a sort of depreciation when I began to be known more as a composer” (Butterworth 165).

His preference for preaching comes through in the way his most popular hymn plays like a sermon. The hymn utilizes a call-and-response pattern similar to that of Psalm 136, in which the leader of the assembly makes a statement about God, and the people respond, “His steadfast love endures forever.”

The lines of the hymn alternate—the odd lines asking essential questions about what reconciles us to God, while the even lines respond with the same refrain: “Nothing but the blood of Jesus.” The chorus, then, draws the musical sermon together, reminding us why the blood of Jesus is so necessary: “Precious is the flow that makes me white as snow. No other fount I know. Nothing but the blood of Jesus.”

By design, call-and-response hymns lead believers to confess their faith together. May we sing such songs over one another. And may “the message about the Messiah dwell richly among you, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, and singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, with gratitude in your hearts to God” (Colossians 3:16).

Nothing but the Blood
Robert Lowry

What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
What can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

O precious is the flow

that makes me white as snow;
no other fount I know;
nothing but the blood of Jesus.

For my pardon this I see:
nothing but the blood of Jesus.
For my cleansing this my plea:
nothing but the blood of Jesus. [Refrain]

Nothing can for sin atone:
nothing but the blood of Jesus.
Naught of good that I have done:
nothing but the blood of Jesus. [Refrain]

This is all my hope and peace:
nothing but the blood of Jesus.
This is all my righteousness:
nothing but the blood of Jesus. [Refrain]

Butterworth, Hezekiah. Story of the Tunes. New York, NY: American Tract Society, 1890.

Written By Russ Ramsey

Post Comments (12)

12 thoughts on "Nothing but the Blood"

  1. Lance says:

    “Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness” Lord thank you for your sacrifice. Forgive me when I take it for granted. And forgive me when I act as though it is not enough. Forgive me when I act as though I’m still under the law and need to do a checklist of things for your sacrifice to be accredited to me. “..for while we were still sinners…” God remind me of this truth today. And may my heart live in response today to your faithfulness, love, and the salvation that comes through Jesus and Jesus alone. NOTHING BUT THE BLOOD. Amen.

  2. Myles J. Robinson says:

    🎧There’s healing in the water
    With a love that flows so deep Wash over me
    Wash over me
    Forgiveness in the water
    With a love that flows so deep Wash over me
    Wash over me
    Salvation in the water
    With a love that flows so deep Wash over me
    Wash over me
    🎼 “Grace Like a Wave” @elevationworship | #HereAsInHeaven 🌊💆🏾‍♂️🙏🏾

  3. Kade Beasley says:

    We are so selfish that it makes me sick. Honestly, I can even become upset with myself and how selfish I can be at times. Oh, well yes we are human…… but just because we are shouldn’t be our excuse. We are to change that through Jesus and His Word; we can become unselfish. I’m believing that today there will be people that overcome their selfish ways and put others before themselves. If you put others before yourself, you will receive twice what you gave others.
    Follow God’s heart. Listen to Him. Sometimes instead of speaking during prayer or worship just sit in the quite and listen to God your father. Just sit with gratitude and awe of how great our God is. Think about what you’ve come through to get in the moment that you are now. Think about all He has blessed you with and thank Him.
    Be raw with Him. God wants our purest and truest self. Surrender every problem thought or struggle you are facing. Whatever it is just talk to God about it. If you don’t understand what God is doing in your life, talk to Him about it because you will find understanding through it. What good does it do for you to keep thinking about how you don’t understand what God is doing, than to just tell him or ask Him. Whatever you ask, you shall receive. Of course you won’t always understand some things, but you can still sit and talk with your Father.

    Have a Blessed day!
    Psalm 148:1

  4. Matt Vanderworp says:

    I’ve never viewed this hymn as a sermon before, but now that I think of it, I can imagine a fiery sermon coming out with the repetitive “Nothing but the blood of Jesus!” Come after every convicting phrase. Constantly hammering at the fact that it’s the blood of Jesus that makes us clean. And Jesus’ sacrifice is what makes us “whole again”.
    “Oh precious is the flow! That makes me white as snow! No other fount I know, nothing but the blood of Jesus!”

  5. Dalton Beaty says:

    “Nothing but the blood of Jesus” is one of my all time favorite hymns. It has so many impactful and truthful proclamations. What can wash away my sins? NOTHING but the blood of Jesus. What can make me whole again? NOTHING but the blood of Jesus. That simple “Sunday school” answer seems so elementary in nature, but it’s the essential truth that every believer shall cling to until the day that Jesus returns. There is no other hope for us, but the blood of Jesus. That is it, Jesus. He is the only way, the only truth, and the only life. Thank you Jesus for your sacrifice, and your life, and your love.

  6. Jared Phillips says:

    The Lamb’s blood covers us. Without that sacrifice on the cross, we would never come to know the freedom of living in total victory over sin and experience the intimacy of the One who created us. Because of the blood, we can boldly come before God. The veil has been torn. Because of the blood, we can resist all temptation because He who was sinless died for us. Because of the blood, we’ve been given a spirit of strength and endurance to persevere in the crucible of hardship in order to become more like the Lamb. Father, remind us of the blood that was sacrificed and the gravity of what has been done for us. Let this reminder truly give us joy to live out our faith, because it is not an empty promise nor a statement that should be taken lightly. Thank you Father!

  7. Dillon Davis says:

    Without blood there is no forgiveness of sins. Thank you for your death Jesus.

  8. Gary says:

    Hebrews 9:15-22 talks about a will and how wills only go into effect when the person whom it belongs to dies. Jesus had to die so that we could receive the eternal inheritance, including salvation and forgiveness for our sins. That’s incredible. I pray this truth sinks in deeply, that I’d be in awe of it and grateful for it every day, never taking it for granted.

  9. Logan says:

    Thanks to the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we have our means of salvation! We praise God for sacrificing His son to save us, and we should sing these praises to Him daily.

  10. Zach Morris says:

    Jesus is the perfect mediator and sacrifice for our sins. He has once and for all atoned and totally covered the sins of his people. We should, through this knowledge, walk in all urgency and conviction after Christ as his disciples and followers. We should also faithfully be killing all forms of sin in our lives, since we know Christ has ultimately conquered it. This knowledge should lead us to continual repentance and worship.

  11. Dustin says:

    Nothing but the blood of Jesus. Just this morning I prayed for forgiveness and a renewing of my heart and mind. The Lord knows my struggles and sin. It’s so easy to try and self punish or do good acts to atone, but only the blood of Jesus can make me right with God. Jesus’ blood sealed a new covenant and allows me to come freely before the Father. What a sweet sacrifice that I’ll never truly understand. I am a blessed man.

  12. Josh W says:

    In my own life, I find it important to daily recall that it was only through the death of Jesus and his sacrifice for me that I have eternal life. His blood paid the price of my sins and through it, allows me to have a relationship with God. Thank you Father for sending your Son Jesus to make a way for me know you. Thank you Jesus for loving me enough to endure the horror of the cross in my place. Thank you Holy Spirit for continually being with me despite my shortcomings and failures, and continuing to reveal your love for me and helping me to know you more.

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