All believers should be able to identify with the heart cry of this song. Have you ever felt like your mind was spinning amidst a thousand thoughts? When you retire to your prayer closet do you find it hard to suppress the onslaught of worries that constantly barrage your mind? The long list of to dos and responsibilities you have each day? Take heart believer, that the Lord is able to conquer even your craziness and replace it with a peace that surpasses comprehension (Philippians 4:7) . God has the power to draw us away from ourselves to Himself with one sovereign word. That is the essence of true worship - turning away from our preoccupation with self.
Posts Tagged ‘Style: Balanced’
This great Trinitarian hymn comes from Gadsby's hymnal and does not have an author listed. It could be from the compiler of the second supplement, J C Philpot. As we sing this song we address each member of the Godhead, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, addressing each one with praises and petitions appropriate to His function and role within the trinity. We declare that the Father reigns over all things in majesty from His heavenly throne room, ask the Son to shed His Word in our hearts and in the world, and show us His loving, sympathetic heart. We ask the spirit to work out our faith and fill us with peace - not just any peace, gospel peace.
What a gloious truth - that we have been called the "friend of God!" (James 2:23) Even more specifically, because Jesus became a man, he is able to understand our weakness for He himself both experienced the results of sin (though not His own) and bore our sins in His body on the cross (1 Peter 2:24). In this song we remember the truth that Jesus is our "friend" despite our lovelessness. Hebrews goes on to tell us: "We do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4:15-16). Because of what Jesus has done, and all that he suffered - taking on frail flesh and dying, giving up his heavenly throne for a time, and knowing no earthly comforts - we can find fullness of joy praising His name!
This is a song about confession of sin and the cleaning that God provides through Jesus. 1 John 1:9: "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." We are ultimately forgiven at the time of our justification (conversion), but John shows us that our cleansing is not just a one-time event. We need to be forgiven of the guilt of our sin - the effect that our sin has on our relationship with God. As Psalm 32:5 says "I acknowledged my sin to You ... and You forgave the guilt of my sin." Let our prayer echo that of Horatius' - "Wash now my soul this day".
The phrase "cross-centered" has become popular recently. We have a continual need to keep the cross of Christ before us and for this central act that secured our salvation to saturate our life of worship. As the writer of Hebrews challenges us, we should be "fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Heb 12:2 NASB) This song reminds us of what Jesus did on our behalf and of the future and final salvation that awaits us because of Him. As we contemplate the significance of the cross we can truly celebrate the blessings God has poured out on us through Christ - that "all our sins [were] on Jesus laid", and that a "full redemption [is] flowing from the sacrifice He made". Praise God!
This song was born out of a difficult time in the life of songwriter David Ward. Overwhelmed by responsibilities - chiefly that of teaching God's word, David felt more than ever his comprehensive, ever-present need for God's presence. This is a beautiful hymn that explains exactly why we need our Lord Jesus so much. Even though in this song we are taught that we need Him because our hearts are dead, because we are always struggling with doubt, and because we need a friend who can understand our sorrows, we will truly never know how much we really need Him!
Revelation chapter 5 gives us an amazing glimpse into what heaven will be like. We will see Christ, the Lamb, adored by millions, saying "Worthy art Thou..." In this song, powerful lyrics combine with a majestic tune and careful repetition to highlight this eternal chant. As we sing, we can imagine the glory of singing in the full presence of our Lord.
This is a well known hymn about suffering, grief, and trials. The original author suffered the lost of several children at sea, and penned these beautiful words that put any complaining spirit in a right perspective. What a prayer of faith that says "Whatever my lot, you have taught me to say...", even in the face of one of the most painful experiences, the loss of a child. Would that we could have even a fraction of this peaceful trust!
There are many contemporary worship songs that we could consider "love" songs to Jesus. While we should certainly pour out our hearts in love to our Savior, most of these songs communicate a mere sentimental love that hardly surpasses the "love" our culture sings about and advertises to every day. What a joy to find a love song that shows WHY we love Christ, and the fact that our love drives us to want to be like Him more and more. Songs like this will help our people to know and feel the love of Christ - both His love for us and our love for Him.
Another well-known hymn, "Rock of Ages" expresses the fact that our salvation from sin is entirely God's work. Even if we could strive with unending zeal, give our best effort at repentance from sin, or bring our richest treasure, we can not atone for our sin before a Holy God. It is only by the work of Christ on our behalf, as the hymn writers says "Simply to Thy cross I cling". How powerfully does the last verse explain the depths of our sinfulness when the writer exclaims "Foul, I to the fountain fly, wash me, savior, or I die." Our worship will brim over in thankfulness as we dwell on all that God has accomplished on the cross!