12.31.2012

Gadsby #3

3 L.M. R. Burnham
The Power of God. Exod. 15:6; Ps. 62:11

1 God is my everlasting King;
God is my Strength, and I will sing;
His power upholds my feeble frame,
And I’m victorious through his name.

2 Devils retreat when he appears;
Then I arise above my fears,
And every fiery dart repel,
And vanquish all the force of hell.

3 Through the Redeemer’s precious blood,
I feel the mighty power of God;
Through the rich aid divinely given,
I rise from earth, and soar to heaven.

4 [Dear Lord, thy weaker saints inspire,
And fill them with celestial fire;
On thy kind arm may they rely,
And all their foes shall surely fly.]

5 Now, Lord, thy wondrous power exert,
And every ransomed soul support;
Give us fresh strength to wing our way
To regions of eternal day.

6 [There may we praise the great I AM,
And shout the victories of the Lamb;
Raise every chorus to his blood,
And triumph in the power of God.]

"God is my strength and I will sing," reminds me of how Tolkein described the army of Rohan coming to the aid of Gondor at Minas Tirith, "And then all the host of Rohan burst into song, and the sang as they slew, for the joy of battle was on them, and the sound of their singing that was fair and terrible came even to the City" (Return of The King, Book 5, Chapter 5). Christians sing throughout their lifelong battle because their victory is secure and they wield a great Power, or rather are wielded by the one who is Power, as they ride into battle. Song is inevitable.

Perhaps the most shocking thing is that God's manifests power most clearly through the death of the Son. Power through death, who would have thought!

12.28.2012

Gadsby #2


 2 C.M. Isaac Watts
The Eternity of God. Ps. 90:2; Lam. 5:19; Hab. 1:12

1 Lord, raise my soul above the ground,
And draw my thoughts to thee;
Teach me, with sweet and solemn sound,
To praise the eternal Three.

2 Long ere the lofty skies were spread,
Jehovah filled his throne;
Or Adam formed, or angels made,
The Maker lived alone.

3 His boundless years can ne’er decrease,
But still maintain their prime;
Eternity’s his dwelling-place,
And ever is his time.

4 While like a tide our minutes flow,
The present and the past,
He fills his own immortal NOW,
And sees our ages waste.

5 The sea and sky must perish too,
And vast destruction come!
The creatures! look how old they grow,
And wait their fiery doom.

6 Well; let the sea shrink all away,
And flame melt down the skies,
My God shall live an endless day
When the old creation dies.

"Sweet and solemn," are words seemingly at odds in describing our praise of God. Praising God should be sweet, full of expressing our delight in Him, and solemn too, since He is God and He created us. In part, solemnity stems from our creature status and His Creator status while sweetness flows from the reality of salvation in Christ.

The thought of anything being infinite or eternal should rightly put our simple understanding of things into a steep tailspin. God is incomprehensible. Try to fathom eternity. Now try to measure the One who is eternal. Compare your time to His.

Can you imagine a new creation? A new everything (Rev. 21:5)? The recreation has already begun.

12.27.2012

Gadsby #1

Lord willing, I am going to try to read one hymn from the Gadsby hymnal each day and share my thoughts on it here. Here goes nothing...

#1 C.M. Isaac Watts
The Infinity of God. Ps. 147:5; Heb. 4:13

1 Great God! how infinite art thou!
What worthless worms are we!
Let the whole race of creatures bow,
And pay their praise to thee!

2 Thy throne eternal ages stood,
Ere seas or stars were made;
Thou art the ever-living God,
Were all the nations dead.

3 [Nature and time quite naked lie
To thy immense survey,
From the formation of the sky,
To the great burning day.]

4 Eternity, with all its years,
Stands present in thy view;
To thee there’s nothing old appears –
Great God! there’s nothing new!

5 Our lives through various scenes are drawn,
And vexed with trifling cares,
While thy eternal thought moves on
Thy undisturbed affairs.

6 Great God! how infinite art thou!
What worthless worms are we!
Let the whole race of creatures bow,
And pay their praise to thee!

All of time, space, and every conceivable thing seen from every possible angle lies "quite naked" in God's sight. It is impossible for God to not know something. And because God descends from unthinkable heights of His being and dwells with us, we can be assured that He knows the future of each one of us.

Nothing is new to God and nothing is old. God is "vexed" by the "trifling cares" of the world in the same way an unkempt college student is bothered by an errant pair of dirty socks on his bedroom floor.

For His grandeur in infinitude and eternality, all creation has ample reason to praise and fear our great God.