Eye on the Sparrow
The theme of the song is inspired by the words of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew in the Bible: “Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (Matthew 6:26) and “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:29–31).
Civilla Martin, who wrote the lyrics, said this about her inspiration to write the song based in the scriptures outlined above,
Early in the spring of 1905, my husband and I were sojourning in Elmira, New York. We contracted a deep friendship for a couple by the name of Mr. and Mrs. Doolittle—true saints of God. Mrs. Doolittle had been bedridden for nigh twenty years. Her husband was an incurable cripple who had to propel himself to and from his business in a wheel chair. Despite their afflictions, they lived happy Christian lives, bringing inspiration and comfort to all who knew them. One day while we were visiting with the Doolittles, my husband commented on their bright hopefulness and asked them for the secret of it. Mrs. Doolittle’s reply was simple: “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.” The beauty of this simple expression of boundless faith gripped the hearts and fired the imagination of Dr. Martin and me. The hymn “His Eye Is on the Sparrow” was the outcome of that experience.
No matter what situation your in, no matter what pain and sorrow you experience. No matter what hardships you endure, no matter what…GOD watches over you.
It may seem to you that so many things happen on this earth, so many things happen to us that there’s NO WAY that GOD is watching and listening. The world is full of hate and pain. The world is full of sorrow.
But, you see…GOD has empathy with the sparrows. So we can reasonably expect that HE has empathy with us in our struggles.
Because man was created in GOD’S Image, and therefore more important than a sparrow. A sparrow doesn’t have the characteristics that man has. Contrary to popular atheist belief sentiment, GOD created man to possess many of HIS attributes.
Moral qualities like love and justice, powers of wisdom, spirituality, speech and reason. Jesus Christ has a divine purpose for man. Not to keep knowledge and everlasting life from him.
This is where the THREE tests come in….FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE come in.
We see in a mirror dimly! Hope is an anchor in a world full of darkness. It’s our inner sanctuary behind the curtain of darkness. All things are dark and confused now, compared with what they will be hereafter.
They can only be seen as by the reflection in a mirror, or in the description of a riddle; but hereafter our knowledge will be free from all obscurity and error.
Temporal is now, and divine is then. Hope fastens our future on happiness.
Love is the greatest, because it is the root of the other two; we believe only in that which we love; we hope only for that which we love.
Love is the greatest because faith and hope are human, but GOD is love.