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May 21, 2023 - #4888 Music & the Spoken Word

The Music & the Spoken Word broadcast airs live via TV, radio, and internet stream on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. mountain time. For information on other airtimes, visit “Airing Schedules” at


Conductor: Mack Wilberg
Organist: Richard Elliott
Announcer: Lloyd D. Newell

“Join We Now in Praise and Sing”
Music: Spanish melody
Lyrics: William E. Hickson
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

“If the Savior Stood beside Me”1
Music and lyrics: Sally DeFord
Arrangement: Sam Cardon

“I Sing the Mighty Power of God”2
Music: English melody
Lyrics: Isaac Watts
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

“I Am Jesus’ Little Lamb” (organ solo)
Music: German melody
Arrangement: Robert Cundick

“Give Glory to His Honored Name”
Music: George Frideric Handel
Lyrics: Samuel Humphreys

“This Is the Christ” 2,3
Music: Michael F. Moody
Lyrics: James E. Faust; Jan Pinborough
Arrangement: Barlow Bradford

“Fight the Good Fight with All Thy Might”
Music: John Gardner
Lyrics: John S. B. Monsell

“Redeemer of Israel” 3,4
Music: Freeman Lewis
Lyrics: Joseph Swain; adapted by William W. Phelps
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

  1. From the album Teach Me to Walk in the Light.
  2. From the album Consider the Lilies.
  3. From the albums Called to Serve..
  4. From the albums Come, Come Ye Saints and Then Sings My Soul.

The Spoken Word

The Good Fight

May 21, 2023
Lloyd D. Newell

The hymn just sung by the Choir was written well over 150 years ago, and it was inspired by words that are much older than that. Nearly 2,000 years ago, the Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, a companion and fellow believer who had served alongside Paul in his ministry. Paul encouraged his beloved young friend with these words: “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life” (1 Timothy 6:12).

In a similar spirit, the hymn “Fight the Good Fight with All Thy Might” encourages us to:

Faint not nor fear,
[God’s] arms are near,
He changeth not, and thou art dear:
Only believe, and thou shalt see
That Christ is all in all to thee.

It might seem odd to describe Christian life as a “fight” when Jesus spoke so much of love and kindness and turning the other cheek.2 But the fact is that living with faith, hope, and charity in a world awash with doubt, discouragement, and hatred can sometimes feel like a fight, a struggle. As Paul said, “We wrestle not against flesh and blood” but against darkness (Ephesians 6:12). We fight to keep the faith—because faith doesn’t just happen. Without a fight, we are “tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine” or opinion or momentary fad (Ephesians 4:14).

Those who have faith have fought for it. It’s as if they have “an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast” (Hebrews 6:19). They reject the idea that truth is relative or that it must be seen to be believed. They resist the human tendency toward selfishness, and they open their hearts to others. They patiently and relentlessly seek the good in everyone. They courageously move forward, even when the path ahead is dark or rugged. That is “the good fight.”

In that sense, Paul, though a loving Christian, was also a fighter. Near the end of his life, he wrote again to Timothy: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:7–8).

  1. John S. B. Monsell, Hymns of Love and Praise for the Church’s Year (1863), 164.
  2. See Matthew 5:38–44.