Before the Throne of God Above

Before the throne of God above was written by Charitie L. Bancroft in 1863.  Charitie (1841-1923) was born near Dublin to a minister in the Church of Ireland.  She married Arthur Bancroft in 1869 and is buried in Mount­ain View Cem­e­te­ry, Oak­land, Cal­i­for­nia.

The lyrics most likely originated as a poem bearing the title, The Advocate, published in a collection of her poetry titled Within the Veil (1867).

Charitie relied heavily on Scripture, referring to no less than 21 passages from 12 books and epistles (cited below).  Traditionally, the tune assigned to this hymn was SWEET HOUR (also known as WALFORD), composed by William Bradbury (1861).  Many recognize this tune as the hymn, Sweet Hour of Prayer.  However, in recent years, the words have been adapted to the more contemporary tune BEFORE THE THRONE, composed by Vikki Cook (c. 1997, Sovereign Grace Worship), and found, for example, in the Baptist Hymnal (2008), hymn number 448.

The version presented in the video on this page is an arrangement by Shane and Shane (Christian band) that appeared in their album, Pages (2007), here performed by Jason Waller.

Before the throne of God above
I have a strong and perfect plea.     (Hebrews 4:15-16)
A great High Priest whose Name is Love     (Hebrews 4:14)
Who ever lives and pleads for me.     (Hebrews 7:25)
My name is graven on His hands,     (Isaiah 49:16)
My name is written on His heart.
I know that while in Heaven He stands
No tongue can bid me thence depart.     (John 10:29; Romans 8:34-39)

When Satan tempts me to despair     (Luke 22:31-32; James 1:14)
And tells me of the guilt within,
Upward I look and see Him there     (Acts 1:9-11; 7:55-56)
Who made an end of all my sin.     (Colossians 2:13-14)
Because the sinless Savior died
My sinful soul is counted free.
For God the just is satisfied
To look on Him and pardon me.     (Romans 3:21-26)

Behold Him there the risen Lamb,     (Revelation 5:6)
My perfect spotless righteousness,     (1 Corinthians 1:30; 1 Peter 1:18-19)
The great unchangeable I AM,     (John 8:58; Hebrews 13:8)
The King of glory and of grace,
One with Himself I cannot die.     (John 17:20-26)
My soul is purchased by His blood,     (Acts 20:28)
My life is hid with Christ on high,     (Colossians 3:3)
With Christ my Savior and my God!     (Titus 2:13)

Baptist hymnal.  (2008).  Nashville, TN:  LifeWay.
Before the Throne – Shane & Shane Arrangement (acoustic cover). (2012, January 12). Retrieved June 07, 2017, from
Before the Throne of God Above, Charitie Bancroft.  (2012, May 08).  Retrieved April 26, 2017, from
Handbook to The Baptist hymnal.  (1992).  Nashville, TN: Convention Press.
(n.d.).  Retrieved April 26, 2017, from