It Is Well With My Soul - Lyrics & History    



     It Is Well With My Soul    

Piano by John Troutman



Who Wrote "It Is Well With My Soul"?
Answer: Words by: Horatio Gates Spafford, 1873.
              Music by: Philip Paul Bliss, 1876.


Verse 1
When peace, like a river,
attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot,
Thou hast taught me to know,
“It is well, it is well with my soul”

   It is well (it is well)
   with my soul (with my soul)
   It is well, it is well with my soul

Verse 2
Though Satan should buffet,
though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded
my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.


Verse 3
My sin, oh the bliss
of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to His cross,
and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!


Verse 4
And Lord haste the day
when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound,
and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.




It Is Well With My Soul - Hymn History

Horatio Gates Spafford, born October 20, 1828, New York.   Died: October 16, 1888, Jerusalem Israel of ma­la­ria

Economic and Personal tragedies struck the Spafford family in a way that could possibly drive someone away from God, but H G Spafford took the calamities that befell him and turned them into a heartfelt expression of contrition before God that would last through the ages.

He lived with his family in Chicago where he was the best of friends with the renowned preacher of the day, Dwight L. Moody. Spafford was a lawyer and had earned a good living and made many investments in real estate in the city but in 1871 he faced several tragedies. He and wife Anna had just lost a son to Scarlet Fever and then the Great Chicago Fire destroyed most of his real estate holdings.

The family carried on, then about 2 years later Horatio decided to take a trip to Europe being aware that his friend Moody would be preaching in England later that year and the family could perhaps attend. However, business matters kept Mr. Spafford behind sending wife Anna and their four daughters ahead on the journey.

The trip turned tragic when their vessel was struck mid-voyage by a large industrial ship taking the lives of 226 passengers including all four of the Spafford daughters, Annie, Bessie, Tanetta and Maggie. However, wife Anna survived and finally arrived in England where she would send a chilling telegram to her husband with only two words, "Saved Alone".

It would be two years before Horatio would sail to England to rejoin his wife. While on the voyage across the ocean, he was made aware of the very spot where the accident had occurred which tragically took the life of his children. There he penned the fateful words to the beloved song, "It Is Well With My Soul".