Worship Through Music

In response to, and in the power of the word of Christ richly dwelling in us, believers are ever to be “…teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in our hearts to God.”  (Col. 3:16)  As we’ll be learning in weeks to come in our sermon series on “Worship in Spirit and Truth”, God has purposed for Christ-saturated singing to have a continually expressive, formative, and instructive effect in the lives of His people.

 Thus as we grow in Christ, there should be deepening songs of gratitude in our hearts – melodies of praise that permeate our daily lives.  And when we gather corporately each Lord’s Day, singing to the Lord and one another is a key part of our shared worship.

 In light of this, we’re blessed at RCG with many gifted musicians and singers who help us all to sing to the Lord and one another.  I want to particularly mention Corey Sparks, who has been giving leadership to our music ministry over the last few years.  He has recently desired to take an indefinite break from this role, so please join me in thanking him and the Lord for his ministry among us.  Corey, your “labor of love” with music is much appreciated!

Love of Christ

Over the last few years, the incredible truth of John 13:1 has increasingly been gripping and overwhelming me:  …Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.”  The holy, persevering love of Jesus Christ for His own, which, wonder-of-wonders includes me, is the most important, amazing, relevant reality in the universe.

Reflecting upon this glorious truth, English pastor William Gadsby (1773-1844) wrote the following hymn, entitled “The Love of Christ.”  An excellent version of this hymn is sung by Sandra McCracken.  Be encouraged and strengthened in the love of God in Christ, beloved!

1. The love of Christ is rich and free;
Fixed on His own eternally;
Nor earth, nor hell, can it remove;
Long as He lives, His own He’ll love.

 

2. His loving heart engaged to be
Their everlasting Surety;
’Twas love that took their cause in hand,
And love maintains it to the end.

 

Chorus: Love cannot from its post withdraw;
Nor death, nor hell, nor sin, nor law,
Can turn the Surety’s heart away;
He’ll love His own to endless day.

 

3. Love has redeemed His sheep with blood;
And love will bring them safe to God;
Love calls them all from death to life;
And love will finish all their strife.

 

4. He loves through every changing scene,
Nor aught from Him can Zion wean;
Not all the wanderings of her heart
Can make His love for her depart.

 

5. At death, beyond the grave, He’ll love;
In endless bliss, His own shall prove
The blazing glory of that love
Which never could from them remove.

 

 Pastor Greg