Dudley Tyng

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Dudley Tyng (January 12, 1825 – April 19, 1858) was an Episcopalian pastor who took a strong stand against slavery and founded the Church of the Covenant in Philadelphia after that stand cost him his pastorate. He was a leader in the revival of 1858. Tyng’s last words, “Let us all stand up for Jesus” became the well-known hymn, “Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus,” written by the pastor friend who preached his funeral, George Duffield, Jr.


Early life

Tyng was a third-generation Episcopalian pastor. His grandfather had served in Philadelphia, and Dudley followed his well-known father, Rev. Stephen H. Tyng, into the pastorate of the Church of the Epiphany there. He served as assistant to his father for a while, and later succeeded him to the pulpit,[1] being elected pastor when his father resigned in 1854.[2]


Education

Tyng was educated at the University of Pennsylvania and the Episcopal Seminary at Alexandria, VA.[3] Ministry and Stand Against Slavery

As an Episcopalian, Tyng denounced specific sins, especially the sin of slavery. This was difficult, since many wealthy church members owned slaves. The message was not well received by everyone, and resulted in a demand for Tyng’s removal only two years into his ministry.

Tyng withdrew from the church, along with some supporters who accepted his anti-slavery message. They formed the Church of the Covenant which gathered for worship in a little meeting hall on the outskirts of Philadelphia. The family moved to a country home nearby.[4]

Tyng began noontime services at the YMCA, and revival broke out. Thousands were converted, and space had to be added to the already-large facility to accommodate the seekers. Sometimes over 5,000 attended the meetings.[5] The revival of 1858 resulted in 10,000 conversions, the founding of forty new churches, and remarkable increases in church membership over the next few years.


Later Life & Death

At the height of the revival, Tyng went for a drive in the country and stopped to watch a demonstration of a corn thrasher. His clothing accidentally got caught in the cogs of the machine and his arm was badly mangled and nearly pulled off. The remains of the arm were amputated, and it soon became clear that Tyng would not survive.[6] After he was told of his soon-coming demise, Tyng said, “Then it is very well. God’s will be done.”[7] He spent his last hours urging his doctor to be converted and asking his wife to encourage his sons to become pastors. At the end he held his pastor-father’s hand and forcing a whisper said, “Stand up for Jesus, Father, and tell my brethren of the ministry, wherever you meet them, to stand up for Jesus!”[8]

The funeral was preached by his friend George Duffield, Jr., a Presbyterian pastor who was also prominent in the revival movement. He preached on the Bible verse to which Tyng’s last words had alluded: “Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth” (Ephesians 6:14), and composed a poem to drive home the point. The poem was later put to music by the organist-composer George Webb (1803-1887), and became a well-known hymn.[9]


References

  1. bereanbibleheritage.org/extraordinary/tyng_dudley.php
  2. http://www.laboringinthelord.com/stand-up-for-jesus/
  3. The Billy Graham Team, Crusader Hymns and Hymn Stories, (Chicago: Hope Publishing, 1966,1967, p. 19
  4. Crusader Hymns, p. 19
  5. Crusader Hymns, p. 19
  6. William J. Petersen & Ardythe Peterson, (Carol Stream, IL:Tyndale House, c. 2006), p.188
  7. Crusader Hymns, p. 20
  8. Crusader Hymns, p. 20
  9. Crusader Hymns, p. 20