Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Prelude of Praise

“O praise the LORD, all ye nations: praise Him, all ye people.  For His merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth forever.  Praise ye the LORD” (Psalm 117:1,2).  “Elijah with Moses… were talking with Jesus… And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear Him.  And suddenly… they saw no man any more, save Jesus only with themselves” (Mark 9:4-8). 

O praise the Lord for His salvation! 
His mercy and His truth abound!
O shout for gladness, every nation!
How wondrous is the joyful sound!

How great His mercy is to us!
His truth endures forevermore!
The work of God is glorious
Which prophets have declared before!

The Law and prophets had foretold
Our Savior would be sacrificed.
Both Moses and Elijah hold
A conversation thus with Christ.

Behold our Lord transfigured then,
As His disciples are asleep, 
Conversing with those ancient men
Of His commitment to His sheep.

The sleeping audience awakes;
Not one of them knows what to say,
So Peter (known for his mistakes),
Now bids the patriarchs to stay.

We see a cloud now overspread
The three disciples filled with fear. 
They’ve heard what God the Father said;
It wasn’t time to speak, but hear! 

There surely is a time to speak,
But not before we listen well.
We need to listen to and seek
His Son who saves our soul from hell.

Then let the joy of Christ amaze
Your heart with truth you can’t keep in,
And let the prelude of our praise
To Jesus Christ our Lord begin!

O Lord, we see Your face alone,
As we’re astonished at Your love. 
You set aside Your splendid throne
To bring redemption from above! 

Be glorified with gratitude,
O Lord, for Your redeeming grace!
This life is just a short prelude
Of praise before we see Your face!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Beloved Because

“I love the Lord, BECAUSE He hath heard my voice… FOR Thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling” (Psalm 116:1-8).  “Every word of God is pure:  He is a Shield unto them that put their trust in Him” (Proverbs 30:5).  “And He began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.  And He spake that saying openly” (Mark 8:31,32). 

I love the Lord because He first
Had loved me when He heard my voice.
He gave His best and took my worst:
What kind of love would make that choice?!

He rescued me from all my fears;
He saved my soul when death was calling.
Befriending me, He dried my tears,
And still He keeps my feet from falling.

He showed me that His Word is pure,
As prophets clearly have revealed.
His promises He made are sure.
I trust in Him; He is my Shield. 

I come into His sanctuary
And He reminds me why He died:  
To save me this was necessary,
That I might thus be justified.

I contemplate, but can’t exhaust,
The reasons now to love my Savior. 
He saw my need, He knew the cost,
And gave Himself to grant me favor!

I see death’s shadow nearer loom,
But Christ now bids me not to fear:  
He robbed the grave of all its gloom,
And in that valley, He’ll be near.

The time and space does not exist,
On this side of eternity,
To draft the reasons I would list
For loving Christ who first loved me. 

O Lord, envisioning Your love
Is like exploring outer space:
You stretched the heavens out above,
Yet even more, Your saving grace!

Until that day on heaven’s shore
When You shall gather all Your own,
O consecrate me more and more
To make my cause to love You known.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Divine Difference

“Our God… hath done whatsoever He hath pleased… Idols are… the work of men's hands.  They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not:  they have ears, but they hear not” (Psalm 115:3-6).  “I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye” (Ezekiel 18:32).  “[They] were beyond measure astonished, saying, He hath done all things well: He maketh both the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak” (Mark 7:37).

Consider what our God has done:
The ear that hears and eye that sees
He made without comparison;
He does whatever He decrees.

How different are the works men do
Who make an idol that has eyes
And fashions ears upon it too,
Concluding that his work is wise. 

The difference here is obvious:
Their idols neither see nor hear!
The work of God is glorious;
The contrast is Divinely clear! 

There’s more perception God would give
That we may sense eternal things
And trust in Christ that we may live
Through His salvation that He brings.

God takes no pleasure in the death
Of those who go to Christless graves:
Our Savior gave His final breath
To ransom sinners whom He saves!

The Lord prepared for us a place
That we might dwell with Him above,
Extending to us truth and grace,
Revealing His redeeming love. 

It pleased the Lord to pay the price
To save us from eternal loss,
So He became our Sacrifice
And suffered for us on the cross!

Behold the endless consequences
With different destinies they span!
The Lord will now enlarge the senses  
To thus perceive salvation’s plan.

Reflect upon the bottom line;  
Forget what others now applaud!
There is a difference that’s Divine
In those prepared to meet their God.

O Lord, You’ve done all things so well!
You gave us eyes and ears to seek
And find the Gospel that we tell,
Since You have loosed our tongues to speak!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Mighty Mercy

“When Israel went out of Egypt… Judah was His sanctuary, and Israel His dominion.  The sea saw it, and fled: Jordan was driven back.  The mountains skipped like rams, and the little hills like lambs… Tremble, thou earth, at the presence of the Lord” (Psalm 114:1-7).  “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.  Happy is the man that feareth [God] always: but he that hardeneth his heart shall fall into mischief” (Proverbs 28:13,26).  “[Jesus] marveled because of their unbelief… and as many as touched Him were made whole” (Mark 6:6,56). 

How weak was Egypt when compared
To God Almighty’s great defense! 
The judgments of the Lord declared
Rebellion’s awful consequence. 

When Israel at last went out
The Lord established His dominion,
Eliminating every doubt,
Refuting every wrong opinion.

Yet desert trials were ahead
For purging that mixed multitude. 
Though Jordan saw the Lord and fled,
His own forgot what they had viewed.

So why did mountains skip like rams
When God went forth with Israel? 
And why did hills then leap like lambs
As bread from heaven on them fell? 

Let all the earth behold and tremble! 
Let every heart be thus reproved!
Let every witness now assemble
And unbelief be thus removed!

Let sin confessed now be forsaken
And conquered thus by Godly fear!
Let hardened hearts at last awaken
And be assured that God is near. 

Let mighty mercy now prevail
As by His fear we are inclined,
To trust in God who shall not fail
To show Himself both strong and kind.

O Lord, when Satan as a thief
Had robbed Your people of Your Word,
You marveled at their unbelief,
In spite of what they saw and heard.  

Yet those, by faith, who touched Your hem
Were by Your mercy thus made whole,
And even as You healed them,
Your hem of mercy saves our soul.

We thank You, Lord, that still today
Your mighty mercy heals such
Who in humility will pray
And thus, by faith, Your hem will touch.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Pity and Promotion

“Who is like unto the LORD our God, who dwelleth on high, who humbleth Himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!  He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill, that He may set him with princes, even with the princes of His people” (Psalm 113:5-8).  “None eye pitied thee… to have compassion upon thee… And when I passed by thee, and saw thee polluted, I said unto thee… Live… and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord GOD, and thou becamest Mine” (Ezekiel 16:5-8).  “[Jesus] saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee” (Mark 5:19). 

There’s no one like the Lord our God
Who stooped in His humility
To face our judgment by His rod
To ransom us eternally.   

He raises sinners from the dust,
Polluted in their sin and shame,
That they may place in Him their trust
And find their refuge in His name. 

There was no sympathetic eye
Apart from His to show such love.
He saw our plight, He heard our cry,
And sent redemption from above. 

The sentence that His Law must give
Demanded death without compassion.
A “compromise,” so we might live,
Could not exist in any fashion.

The Law of God was absolute
And void of any compromise,
So Christ became the Substitute
For every soul He justifies! 

Go home and tell it to your friends! 
Declare the great things God has done!
Proclaim the mercy God extends
Through Jesus Christ, His precious Son!

O Lord, it’s hard to take it in,
That You would pay that awful price
For rebel sinners, lost in sin,
And thus become our Sacrifice!

Your love, Lord, like a shoreless ocean,
Eternal and unspeakable,
Extends Your pity and promotion
By Your redemption of our soul!

We’re drawing near, Lord, to Your throne
In speechless worship as we bow,
For such great pity You have shown,
Promoted as Your children now.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Dawning in Darkness

“Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness: he is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous” (Psalm 112:4).  “The cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the Word, and it becometh unfruitful... Such as hear the word, and receive it… bring forth fruit… And He said unto them, Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel or under a bed, and not to be set on a candlestick?” (Mark 4:18-21). 

Our world is shrouded in darkness today
Yet there is a light that is dawning therein,
For those who are showing that Christ is the Way,
Shall shine on the souls they shall fruitfully win.

We’re called to be light in a visible place,
To shine in the shadows of darkness and weeping,
To go with compassion declaring God’s grace,
To labor for Christ, whether sowing or reaping.

The light we are shining must come from the Lord;
We shine like the moon that’s reflecting the sun. 
We preach ourselves, but the Christ we’ve adored
And point His work on the cross He has done.

The cares of this world, the riches that fade,
And darkness that grows with the lust of the eyes,
Deceive those who march in this passing parade,
Yet light, by the Gospel of Christ, shall arise.

Our days here are numbered; they soon will be gone.
Our light as a candle shall come to an end.
Our time and location to shine as the dawn
Is NOW and WHEREVER our Savior will send. 

Lord, thank You for light that You sent from above
To shine in the darkness where we were enslaved.
How great was the light that broke through with Your love,
Proclaiming the Gospel by which we were saved!

O Lord, fix our eyes upon You in these days,  
And grant us Your light as the sun does the moon.
We see the horizon break forth with its rays
That tell us the dawn of Your coming is soon!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Searching the Sublime

“The works of the LORD are great, sought out of all them that have pleasure therein” (Psalm 111:2).  It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter” (Proverbs 25:2).  “Ye shall know that I have not done without cause all that I have done… saith the Lord GOD” (Ezekiel 14:23).  “A great multitude from Galilee followed Him… when they had heard what great things He did” (Mark 3:7,8). 

It’s possible to waste our time
By searching things that do not matter. 
Let’s search the works of God sublime
And put behind us empty chatter!

The works of God are surely great,
Delighting hearts with endless treasure.
Our time is short, the hour late:
We find in Christ our truest pleasure. 

It is the glory of our God
To hide a thing that we should seek.
Should not we count it sadly odd
If He should find our interest weak? 

So many things that win applause
Are like the chaff the wind has driven,
So void of an eternal cause,
A pointless waste of time that’s given.

The works of God in His creation,
Which He sustains by sovereign Law,
Together by His orchestration,
Should cause our souls to stand in awe!

How many things there are concealed
Which we discover by God’s aid,
And thus His glory is revealed
By all the things that He has made!

Yet now we come to things explored,
Declared within prophetic scrolls,
Concerning Jesus Christ our Lord,
Who gave Himself to save our souls!

Come, search things regarding Christ
And see His beauty thus unveiled! 
The Lamb of God was sacrificed;
His love was tried and NEVER failed! 

The multitudes that followed Him
Discovered things that once were hid,
And lesser things became so dim
In view of greater things He did.

O Lord, we never shall exhaust
Your endless treasures that we glean!
We search Your love that saves the lost: 
No greater love was ever seen!

Lord, send us as ambassadors
Proclaiming love sublime and full,
Which from Your heart forever pours
And satisfies the longing soul. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Passing Power

“Thy people shall be willing in the day of Thy power” (Psalm 110:3).  “A just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again” (Proverbs 24:16).  “That ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins (He saith to the sick of the palsy), I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.  And immediately he arose… [Jesus] saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Mark 2:10-17). 

There is a coming day and hour
When every knee shall surely bow.
TODAY, however, there is power
That we should access even NOW!

The day of power is now here,
For everyone who is the Lord’s,
For cleansing sin and drawing near
By grace that Christ alone affords!

The sinner justified by grace
Who stumbles seven times and falls
Still rises up again in place
As on the Lord he humbly calls. 

We dare not let this power pass
That Christ in us would NOW make known! 
His strength abounds, and yet, alas,
We draw too often on our own.

The grace of Christ was realized,
With power God alone can claim,
When He forgave the paralyzed; 
His power is today the same! 

The day of power still is seen
When sinners truly shall repent,
And God forgives and makes them clean
As healing grace to them is sent.

Today we surely need physicians
Providing healing medication,
Yet much more needed are decisions
To trust in Christ for His salvation!

O Lord, the urgency is great,
Though apathy today is chilling.
The day is here, we do not wait,
For future power to be willing. 

Your power, Lord, is NOW at hand;
We would not let it pass us by.
O send us forth by Your command
And with Your grace to testify! 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Devil by Default

“For My love they are My adversaries… let Satan stand at his right hand… I will greatly praise the LORD… for He shall stand at the right hand of the poor, to save him from those that condemn his soul” (Psalm 109:4-31).  “Eat thou not the bread of him that hath an evil eye… his heart is not with thee… My son, if thine heart be wise, My heart shall rejoice, even Mine… My son, give Me thine heart” (Proverbs 23:6-26).  “Jesus said unto them, Come ye after Me, and I will make you to become fishers of men.… with authority commandeth He even the unclean spirits” (Mark 1:17-27).

There is a choice that must be made:
To turn to Christ or hold a lie.
The souls who will not make that trade
Are lost forever when they die.

The Savior knocks at every door
To prompt each soul to let Him in,
Yet Satan bids us to ignore
The only One who saves from sin. 

The only thing souls have to do
To merit hell is just to halt.
We’ll either turn to what is true
Or choose the Devil by default.

The Devil’s table now is spread
For those who do not count the cost.  
His guests, he knows, shall soon dead,
And then forever shall be lost.

Our Savior died to pay the price
That Satan’s captives might be freed.
Since Christ became our Sacrifice,
His saving grace is all we need.

Behold God’s great Alternative
To sorrows that shall never end:
Now all who trust in Christ shall live
By saving grace He will extend! 

Behold our Lord’s authority:
The demons see Him and they run!
He saves our souls eternally;
His great redeeming work is done! 

O Lord, we praise You for the choice
That we may give our heart to You.
How great our cause is to rejoice
For all Your benefits we view! 

We thank You for Your invitation
To trust You, Lord, on every level!
We preach the Gospel of salvation
So others may escape the Devil.