“The Old Account Was Settled” is a popular gospel hymn written by Rev Frank Monford Graham, a Wesleyan Methodist minister in the United States of America. He was a Scotch-Irish American with family roots in Donegal and Londonderry. Now, he is the known founder of Southern Wesleyan University in South Carolina.
Johnny Cash, the Cathedrals, the Statler Brothers and the Booth Brothers performed it in the more recent times. The song is a narrative of the legal transaction that takes place in heaven when a sinner trusts in the Savior as his only means of salvation.
The Bible says,
“He [God the Father] made Him [Christ] who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
(II Corinthians 5:21)
In today’s world, if the debt is justifiably yours, the right thing to do is pay it back. Now, think of a boundless account book listing all our sins as a debt we owe. Apparently, our debt was reassigned to Christ’s account, and He paid that debt in full on the cross. Moreover, the above verse specifies, God more than calls off our debts when we trust Christ as our Redeemer. He credits our account with the perfect righteousness of His dear Son.
“Long ago (down on my knees), long ago (I settled it all),
Yes, the old account was settled long ago (Hallelujah!);
And the record’s clear today, for He washed my sins away,
When the old account was settled long ago.”
Reflections from the Heart
Most of us must have been able to avoid much financial debt in our lifetime. I, for one, remember the load of paying off my college fees and necessities, since I lived away from my parents. Right after, the sense of liberty and relief comes when I am able to pay my bills. The same is true with our spiritual life. I hope that you also felt joy when God settled your debt of sin. However, this is different from our financial debts, working hard to earn money to pay them off. Salvation settled our debt of sin. It is free. We did not have to undergo pain and suffering. With salvation, Jesus Christ paid the heavy price at Calvary.
All we had to do is accept his gift, his payment of our debts. He did everything for us. Accepting his gift is a way to take part of the settlement He did. His mercy does not make us try to pay for our sins. His grace gives us His riches at His expense. Account settled, my friends, no more debt! Thank You, Jesus.
Here is Johnny Cash’s song, a version you will surely love.
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Johnny Cash, The Old Account