Scripture Verse

Neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. 1 Corinthians 3:7


Words: Geor­gi­ana M. Tay­lor, 1869.

Music: R. George Halls, ar­ranged by Phi­lip P. Bliss (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Halls (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els), or a bet­ter one of Tay­lor,

Georgiana M. Taylor (1847–1915)

Miss Tay­lor writes me:

The idea for the hymn came in­to my mind through read­ing of the ex­pres­sion, Oh, to be no­thing, in a vol­ume of an old ma­ga­zine. I think it oc­curred in an­ec­dote about an ag­ed Chris­tian work­er. At all ev­ents the words haunt­ed me; I mused on their mean­ing, and the hymn was the out­come.

Some one mis­in­ter­pret­ed the true mean­ing of the hymn, and has wri­tten an­oth­er one en­ti­tled, Oh, to be some­thing. But it is not in ac­cord­ance with the Mas­ter, who made him­self no­thing; nor is it in the spi­rit of the text which says that he that abas­eth him­self shall in due time be ex­alt­ed.

This hymn was much used as a so­lo in our meet­ings in Great Bri­tain.

Sankey, p. 208


Oh, to be no­thing, no­thing,
Only to lie at His feet,
A brok­en and emp­tied ves­sel,
For the Mas­ter’s use made meet.
Emptied that He might fill me
As forth to His ser­vice I go;
Broken, that so un­hin­dered,
His life through me might show.


Oh, to be no­thing, no­thing,
Only to lie at His feet,
A brok­en and emp­tied ves­sel,
For the Mas­ter’s use made meet.

Oh, to be no­thing, no­thing,
An ar­row hid in His hand;
A mes­sen­ger at His gate­way,
Only wait­ing for His com­mand;
Only an in­stru­ment, rea­dy
For Him to use at His will,
And will­ing, should He not re­quire me,
In pat­ience to wait on Him still.


Oh, to be no­thing, no­thing,
Though pain­ful the hum­bling be,
Yet low in the dust I’d lay me
That the world might my Sav­ior see.
Rather be no­thing, no­thing,
To Him let our voic­es be raised,
He is the Foun­tain of bless­ing,
He on­ly is meet to be praised.


Yet e’en as my plead­ing ris­es,
A voice seems with mine to blend,
And whis­pers, in lov­ing ac­cents,
I call thee not ser­vant, but friend;
Fellow-worker with Me I call thee,
Sharing My sor­row and joy—
Fellow-heir to the glo­ry I have above,
The trea­sure with­out al­loy.


Oh! love so free, so bound­less!
Which, lift­ing me, lays me low­er
At the foot­stool of Je­sus, my ris­en Lord,
To wor­ship and adore—
Which fills me with deeper long­ing
To have no­thing di­vid­ing my heart,
My all giv­en up to Je­sus,
Not keep­ing back a part.


Thine may I be, Thine on­ly,
Till called by Thee to share
The glo­ri­ous hea­ven­ly man­sions
Thou art gone be­fore to pre­pare;
My heart and soul are yearn­ing
To see Thee face to face,
With un­fet­tered tongue to praise Thee
For such heights and depths of grace.