Friday, July 29, 2011

Christ, Our Wounded Victor

Christ's Atoning Wounds
© 2009, M. Justin Wainscott

That sacred stream which ever flows,
Flows from the Savior's wounds,
Does in the souls of saints compose
Sweet, Christ-exalting tunes.

So let the saints in chorus flood
This place with songs of praise;
And sing of Christ's redeeming blood,
And marvel at his grace.

The precious wounds of Christ above -
His hands, his feet, his side -
Stand as a witness to his love
For us, his ransomed bride.

Those wounds which paid our sinful debt
Remove all grounds for pride;
For God's requirements all were met
When Christ our Savior died.

So let us boast in him alone,
And in the wounds he bears;
Since he who sits on heaven's throne
Those sacred scars still wears.

And when before that throne we stand,
And on our Savior gaze;
We'll truly come to understand,
His wounds deserve our praise.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Friday, July 22, 2011

Welcome News To Sinners

The first and last stanzas of William Gadbsy's hymn, "The Gospel Is Good News Indeed," are a beautiful reminder of how sweet it is for sinners to hear the good news of the gospel:

The gospel is good news indeed,
To sinners deep in debt;
The man who has no works to plead,
Will thankful be for it.

The man that feels his guilt abound,
And knows himself unclean,
Will find the gospel's joyful sound
Is welcome news to him.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Great Quote, Great Picture - You Need to See Both for the Full Effect

Normally, I would just take a quote like the one I'm about to recommend and include it in the post (without making you have to go to another site to read it). But the picture that Kevin DeYoung included with this quote by the Puritan, Thomas Brooks, is too good not to point you to his blog to see both. Check them out here.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Congregationally Shaped Christians

"Most evangelical Christians today seem to treat their church as one more thing to help out their Christian life, perhaps along with this Bible study, that music, those authors, this retreat, and keeping a journal. In other words, the Christian conceives of his or her spiritual life as fundamentally one's own business, managed by selecting among various helps. This approach contrasts with an older and more biblical way of thinking about the Christian life that is congregationally shaped, where the demands of the gospel are made concrete in a particular local church."

--Mark Dever, "The Church," in A Theology for the Church

Friday, July 15, 2011

Let Me Learn Thy Word to Prize

Sin, When Viewed By Scripture Light
John Newton, 1725-1807

Sin, when viewed by Scripture light,
Is a horrid, hateful sight;
But when seen in Satan’s glass,
Then it wears a pleasing face.

When the gospel trumpet sounds,
When I think how grace abounds,
When I feel sweet peace within,
Then I’d rather die than sin.

When the cross I view by faith,
Sin is madness, poison, death;
Tempt me not, ’tis all in vain,
Sure I ne’er can yield again.

Satan, for awhile debarred,
When he finds me off my guard,
Puts his glass before my eyes,
Quickly other thoughts arise.

What before excited fears,
Rather pleasing now appears;
If a sin, it seems so small,
Or, perhaps, no sin at all.

Often thus, through sin’s deceit,
Grief, and shame, and loss I meet,
Like a fish, my soul mistook,
Saw the bait, but not the hook.

O my Lord, what shall I say?
How can I presume to pray?
Not a word have I to plead,
Sins, like mine, are black indeed!

Made, by past experience, wise,
Let me learn Thy Word to prize;
Taught by what I’ve felt before,
Let me Satan’s glass abhor.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Crying Over Meaningful Things

Grown Man Crying
© 2011, M. Justin Wainscott

I saw a grown man cry today,
But I didn't pity him.
I admired him,
Because he cared so deeply
about something (or someone)
that it moved him to tears.
Oh, that more grown men would cry
over meaningful things.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Most Humbling Force in the World

"The gospel has more power to humble than any other force in the world."

--Jim Hamilton, "The Lord's Supper in Paul," in The Lord's Supper

Friday, July 8, 2011

To the Promises I Flee

Precious Bible! What a Treasure
John Newton, 1725-1807

Precious Bible! what a treasure
Does the Word of God afford?
All I want for life or pleasure,
Food and med’cine, shield and sword:
Let the world account me poor,
Having this I need no more.

Food to which the world’s a stranger,
Here my hungry soul enjoys;
Of excess there is no danger,
Though it fills, it never cloys:
On a dying Christ I feed,
He is meat and drink indeed.

When my faith is faint and sickly,
Or when Satan wounds my mind,
Cordials, to revive me quickly,
Healing med’cines here I find:
To the promises I flee,
Each affords a remedy.

In the hour of dark temptation
Satan cannot make me yield;
For the Word of consolation
Is to me a mighty shield
While the Scripture truths are sure,
From his malice I’m secure.

Vain his threats to overcome me,
When I take the Spirit's sword;
Then with ease I drive him from me.
Satan trembles at the Word:
’Tis a sword for conquest made,
Keen the edge, and strong the blade.

Shall I envy then the miser
Doting on his golden store?
Sure I am, or should be, wiser,
I am rich, ’tis he is poor:
Jesus gives me in his Word,
Food and med’cine, shield and sword.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Beware the Secret, Subtle, and Stealthy Serpent

"For it is not persecution alone that is to be feared; nor those things which advance by open attack to overwhelm and cast down the servants of God. Caution is more easy where danger is manifest, and the mind is prepared beforehand for the contest when the adversary avows himself. The enemy is more to be feared and to be guarded against, when he creeps on us secretly; when, deceiving by the appearance of peace, he steals forward by hidden approaches, whence also he has received the name of the Serpent. That is always his subtlety; that is his dark and stealthy artifice for circumventing man."

--Cyprian, Treatise I, "On the Unity of the Church"

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Sojourn's "The Water and the Blood"

Sojourn Music has now released Volume 2 of their project on the hymns of Isaac Watts, titled "The Water and the Blood." Below is a video of the band discussing the album, along with a few snippets of some of the songs.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Honoring God Before Country

As we celebrate the independence of our great nation, we acknowledge God's bountiful blessings and providential care throughout our history.

We acknowledge the courageous and sacrificial service of so many men and women who fought, and are fighting, for the freedoms we enjoy and so often take for granted. With deep gratitude, we recognize and remember those who gave their lives defending those freedoms.

We acknowledge those who have gone before us to help shape and form these United States.

And we acknowledge the wonderful opportunities and benefits afforded to us simply by being American.

But as Christians, while still being grateful and mindful of this wonderful nation of ours, we celebrate a far greater freedom today - freedom from sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Thus on this day it becomes especially important for us to remember and confess that we are Christians first, then Americans.

We acknowledge God before country, and the Cross before the Stars and Stripes. Our primary loyalty is to Jesus Christ and his kingdom, which is made up of people from every nation, tribe, and tongue.

So while we acknowledge that we are citizens of two kingdoms, one has far greater significance than the other. And thus we proclaim today that "our citizenship is in heaven, and from there we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ" (Phil. 3:20).

Friday, July 1, 2011

He Who Never Hast a Good Withheld

O Lord, My Best Desire Fulfill
William Cowper, 1731-1800

O Lord, my best desire fulfill
And help me to resign,
Life, health, and comfort to Thy will,
And make Thy pleasure mine.

Why should I shrink at Thy command,
Whose love forbids my fears?
Or tremble at the gracious hand
That wipes away my tears?

No, let me rather freely yield
What most I prize to Thee;
Who never hast a good withheld,
Or wilt withhold from me.

Thy favor, all my journey through,
Thou art engaged to grant;
What else I want, or think I do,
’Tis better still to want.

Wisdom and mercy guide my way,
Shall I resist them both?
A poor blind creature of a day,
And crushed before the moth!

But ah! my inward spirit cries,
Still bind me to Thy sway;
Else the next cloud that veils my skies,
Drives all these thoughts away.