You almost persuade me to be a Christian.@Acts 26:28

Phi­lip P. Bliss, The Charm (Chi­ca­go, Il­li­nois: Root & Ca­dy, 1871, num­ber 69.

Cæ­sa­rea Phi­lip P. Bliss, 1871 (🔊 pdf nwc).

portrait
Philip P. Bliss (1838–1876)

He who is al­most per­suad­ed is al­most saved, and to be al­most saved is to be en­tire­ly lost, were the words with which the Rev. Mr. Brun­dage end­ed one of his ser­mons. P. P. Bliss, who was in the au­di­ence, was much im­pressed with the thought, and im­me­di­ate­ly set about the com­po­si­tion of what proved to be one of his most pop­u­lar songs.

One of the most im­pres­sive oc­ca­sions on which this hymn was sung was in the Ag­ri­cul­tur­al Hall in Lon­don, in 1874, when Mr. Glad­stone was pre­sent. At the close of his ser­mon Mr. Moody asked the con­gre­ga­tion to bow their heads, while I sang Al­most Per­suad­ed. The still­ness of death pre­vailed through­out the au­di­ence of over fif­teen thou­sand, as souls were mak­ing their de­ci­sions for Christ.

Sankey, p. 112


While en­gaged in evan­gel­is­tic work in west­ern Penn­syl­van­ia, writes the Rev. A. J. Fur­man, I saw the peo­ple deep­ly moved by sing­ing. I had be­gun my prep­a­r­ation to preach in the ev­en­ing, from the text, Al­most thou per­suad­est me to be a Chris­tian, when it oc­curred to me that if Mrs. B—, an es­tim­a­ble Chris­tian and a most ex­cel­lent sing­er, would sing Al­most Per­suad­ed as a so­lo, great good might be done. At once I left the room and called on the la­dy, who con­sent­ed to sing as re­quest­ed.

When I had fin­ished my ser­mon, she sang the song with won­der­ful path­os and pow­er. It moved ma­ny to tears. Among them was the prin­ci­pal of the high school, who could not re­sist the ap­peal through that song. He and sev­er­al oth­ers found the Pearl of Great Price be­fore the next day. Af­ter the close of the ser­mon, I spoke to Mrs. B— about the ef­fect of her sing­ing, and she told me that she had been pray­ing ear­nest­ly all that af­ter­noon, that she might so sing as to win sin­ners for her Sav­iour that night, and her pray­ers were sur­ely an­swered.

Sankey, p. 112–13


It was Sun­day night, No­vem­ber 18, 1883, writes Mr. S. W. Tuck­er, of Clap­ton, Lon­don, when I heard you sing Al­most Per­suad­ed in the Pri­ory Hall, Is­ling­ton, Lon­don, and God used that song in draw­ing me to the feet of Je­sus. I was afraid to trust my­self in His hands for fear of man. For six weeks that hymn was ring­ing in my ears, till I ac­cept­ed the in­vi­ta­tion. I came, and am now re­joic­ing in the Lord, my Sav­iour. How oft­en, with tears of joy and love, have I thought of those meet­ings and of you and dear Mr Moody, who showed me and oth­er sin­ners where there was love, hap­pi­ness, and joy.

Sankey, p. 113


Said a young man to the Rev. Mr. Young, I intend to be­come a Chris­tian some time, but not now. Don’t trou­ble your­self about me. I’ll tend to it in good time. A few weeks af­ter, the man was in­jured in a saw-mill, and as he lay dy­ing, Mr. Young was called to him. He found him in despair, say­ing: Leave me alone. At your meet­ing I was al­most per­suad­ed, but I would not yield, and now it is too late. Oh, get my wife, my sis­ters and my bro­thers to seek God, and do it now, but leave me alone, for I am lost. With­in an hour he passed away, with these words on his lips: I am lost, just be­cause I would not yield when I was al­most per­suad­ed.

Sankey, pp. 113–14

Almost persuaded now to believe;
Almost persuaded Christ to receive;
Seems now some soul to say,
Go, Spirit, go Thy way,
Some more convenient day
On Thee I’ll call.

Almost persuaded, come, come today;
Almost persuaded, turn not away;
Jesus invites you here,
Angels are lingering near
Prayers rise from hearts so dear;
O wanderer, come!

Almost persuaded, harvest is past!
Almost persuaded, doom comes at last!
Almost cannot avail;
Almost is but to fail!
Sad, sad, that bitter wail—
Almost, but lost!