I Serve a Risen Savior

Full Text

1 I serve a risen Savior, He's in the world today;
I know that He is living, whatever men may say.
I see His hand of mercy, I hear His voice of cheer,
And just the time I need Him, He's always near.

He lives, He lives! Christ Jesus lives today!
He walks with me and talks with me along life's narrow way.
He lives, He lives, salvation to impart!
You ask me how I know He lives?
He lives within my heart!

2 In all the world around me I see His loving care;
And tho' my heart grows weary, I never will despair.
I know that He is leading thro' all the stormy blast;
The day of His appearing will come at last. [Refrain]

3 Rejoice, rejoice, O Christian, lift up your voice and sing
Eternal hallelujahs to Jesus Christ, the King!
The Hope of all who seek Him, the Help of all who find,
None other is so loving, so good and kind. [Refrain]

Source: The Celebration Hymnal: songs and hymns for worship #368

Author: A. H. Ackley

(no biographical information available about A. H. Ackley.) Go to person page >


Scripture References:
ref. = Luke 24:6

Written by Presbyterian minister Alfred H. Ackley (b. Spring Hill, PA, 1887; d. Whittier, CA, 1960), both text and tune were published in the Rodeheaver hymnal Triumphant Service Songs (1933). (Rodeheaver was a gospel song publisher.) As told by hymnal editor George Sanville, the following incident provided the spark for Ackley's inspiration: a young Jewish man asked evangelist/musician Ackley, "Why should I worship a dead Jew?" To which Ackley replied,

But Jesus lives! He lives! I tell you. He is not dead, but lives here and now. Jesus Christ is more alive today than ever before. I can prove it by my own experience, as well as by the testimony of countless thousands.

Sanville goes on to explain,

Mr. Ackley's forthright, emphatic answer, together with his subsequent triumphant effort to win the man for Christ, flowered forth into song and crystallized into a convincing sermon on "He lives!" . . . The scriptural evidence, his own heart, and the testimony of history matched the glorious experience of an innumerable cloud of witnesses that "He lives," so he sat down at the piano and voiced that conclusion in song.
-Forty Gospel Hymn Stories, 1943

Ackley wrote the words and/or tunes to at least a thousand gospel songs and hymns in collaboration with his brother Bentley. Trained at the Royal Academy of Music in London, he was an accomplished cellist. Ackley graduated from Westminster Theological Seminary in Maryland and served Presbyterian churches in California and Pennsylvania. In addition to writing his own hymns, he edited hymnals and gospel song¬books for the Rodeheaver Publishing Company.

Liturgical Use:
Easter; equally useful on many other occasions of worship.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook



Composed in gospel-song style, ACKLEY is supported by a simple harmonization intended for part singing. Some rubato may be observed in the refrain's final line. Observe two pulses per bar. --Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1987

Go to tune page >



Instances (21)TextImageAudioScoreFlexscore
African American Heritage Hymnal #275Image
Ambassador Hymnal: for Lutheran worship #527
Baptist Hymnal 1991 #533TextImage
Baptist Hymnal 2008 #269TextImage
Celebrating Grace Hymnal #622Image
Chalice Hymnal #226TextImage
Complete Mission Praise #295
Hymns of Faith #167TextImage
Lift Every Voice and Sing II: an African American hymnal #42TextImage
Lift Up Your Hearts: psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs #365TextImage
Praise! Our Songs and Hymns #550Image
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #405TextImageAudio
Rejoice Hymns #327
Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #251
Sing Joyfully #285TextImage
The Celebration Hymnal: songs and hymns for worship #368TextImage
The Covenant Hymnal: a worshipbook #253
The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration #220Image
The United Methodist Hymnal #310TextImage
The Worshiping Church #248TextImage
Worship and Rejoice #302TextImage