Behind the Hymn: One Day

One Day was written by John Wilbur Chapman.

John Wilbur Chapman

Chapman was born on June 17, 1859 and came to understand salvation from D. L. Moody. Moody later encouraged him to enter full-time evangelism.

Chapman was elected Moderator of the Presbyterian General Assembly in 1918 and considered a leader among the American Presbyterians.

Charles Howard Marsh was a student of Dr. Chapman. Marsh wrote that at a Bible Conference in Stony Brook, Dr. Chapman “gave me the poem “One Day” and another entitled “All Hail the Power”. I set them both to music that summer.”

Later Marsh left to go to college and parted ways with Dr. Chapman.

Chapman died on Christmas Day in 1918 at the age of fifty-nine years old.

At some point according to Marsh, maybe after Chapman’s death, there was a copyright battle between an associate of Dr. Chapman and the publishers.


One Day began as a poem #hymnstory Share on X



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