John Kent (1766-1843)

 •  1 min. read  •  grade level: 8
Hymns #70 (vs.1 only), 87, Appendix 11, 41.
John Kent was born at Bideford, Devonshire, England, in December 1766. He was the son of a shipwright in Plymouth Dock, now Devonport, and had very little opportunity of getting an education. When but fourteen he was apprenticed to his father but used his leisure time in improving his knowledge and ability. How he was saved by the Lord and under what conditions are not known. But early he became interested in writing religious verses. In 1803 some of these were published in a small volume entitled “A Collection of Original Gospel Hymns.” He was said to be a modest and genuine Christian in his life. After many years he was overtaken by a great misfortune in the loss of his sight. This he bore with great patience and he died in peace with confidence in the Lord Jesus on November 15, 1843. His last words were, “I am accepted!”
“Sov’reign grace o’er sin abounding,
Ransomed souls the tidings swell!
‘Tis a deep that knows no sounding;
Who its length or breadth can tell?”
(vs. 1 of #70 which he wrote in 1827-the rest of the hymn was by George Horne who died in 1792.)
The writer of this book has found much comfort from #11 in the Appendix, from which we now quote verse 1:
“What cheering words are these!
Their sweetness who can tell?
In time and to eternal days
‘Tis with believers well!”