Song Snapshots #20: I Have Seen the Lord (Signature Sound)


Song Snapshots is a column featuring the stories behind new and classic Southern Gospel songs.

Like so many of Southern Gospel’s finest songs, “I Have Seen the Lord” was inspired by a sermon. At the time the song was written, co-writer Belinda Smith was attending Grace Church of the Nazarene in Nashville.

“When you work in music all week,” she explains, “it’s kind of fun to slip into the balcony and sit back and listen to what other people do. I’m not going to say I wouldn’t support a church musically, but it’s Nashville. Everyone’s so talented musically! So nobody there knew I was a songwriter.”

One Easter, Pastor Richard Ball kept using the phrase “I have seen the Lord” in his sermon. The phrase stuck with her. One day, in a co-writing session with Sue C. Smith, she mentioned the idea, saying, “We should write this.” They did; Signature Sound Quartet recorded it on their debut recording, Stand By Me.

After the recording came out, she mailed a copy to Pastor Ball. She said, “Hey, I write songs, and you don’t know this, but I thought you would get a kick out of hearing this.”


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8 Letters to the Editor

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  1. Very much like “We Have Seen God’s Glory!”

  2. Since your database is awesome do you know if this was recorded on any of their other cd’s. Thanks for sharing

  3. Not as far as I know. I sure wish someone would bring it back!

  4. Sure is a great song…what powerful words!!!….Praise God!!!

  5. This was awesome! I am really becoming a “songwriter-fan”!! For a long time they were never mentioned, to my knowledge. I love the showcases the Phil Cross has been doing for several years. Also, any others that actually give credit verbally to a songwriter when preparing to sing one of their songs. I must go and see if I have this CD. I want to put it in my car so I can hear it over and over when I am out and about.
    This feature is becoming one of my favorites. (who was the lead singer in this clip?) I can’t remember his name. Thanks!

    • Well, it’s just giving credit where credit is due, and I’m happy to be a part of it!

      If by lead singer you mean the person singing the melody – Ernie Haase. If by lead singer you mean the second tenor / second highest singer, Shane Dunlap.

  6. I bet that Pastor was surprised at a difference his words made on one listener one Sunday Morning….hey, that sounds like a song title, too……