Saturday, June 1, 2013

Hymn of the Month - "Built on the Rock"

The hymn for this month is “Built on the Rock.”  The hymn was written by Nikolai Fredrik Severin Grundtvig and translated by Carl Dรถving.  This hymn is a powerful reminder that the Church is not about individuals.  The Church is not about what we do.  The Church is not about what governments do.  The Church is not about what influential groups do.  The Church is not about what congregations or pastors do.  If it was about what people do, the Church would be in a load of trouble.  Fortunately, the Church is about Jesus.  It doesn’t matter what happens in the world.  It doesn’t matter who our leaders are, who our pastors are, or who is in our congregations.  Jesus is bigger than all of that.  It is on Jesus that our hope can rest.  

Built on the Rock the Church shall stand,
Even when steeples are falling;
Crumbled have spires in every land,
Bells still are chiming and calling,
Calling the young and old to rest,
But above all the soul distressed,
Longing for rest everlasting.

Surely in temples made with hands,
God, the Most High, is not dwelling;
High above earth His temple stands,
All earthly temples excelling.
Yet He whom heavens cannot contain
Chose to abide on earth with men,
Built in our bodies His temple.

We are God's house of living stones,
Builded for His habitation;
He through baptismal grace us owns
Heirs of His wondrous salvation.
Were we but two His name to tell,
Yet He would deign with us to dwell,
With all His grace and His favor.

Now we may gather with our King
E'en in the lowliest dwelling;
Praises to Him we there may bring,
His wondrous mercy forthtelling.
Jesus His grace to us accords;
Spirit and life are all His words;
His truth doth hallow the temple.

Still we our earthly temples rear
That we may herald His praises;
They are the homes where He draws near
And little children embraces.
Beautiful things in them are said;
God there with us His covenant made,
Making us heirs of His kingdom.

Here stands the font before our eyes
Telling how God did receive us;
The altar recalls Christ's sacrifice
And what His table doth give us;
Here sounds the Word that doth proclaim
Christ yesterday, today, the same,
Yea, and for aye our Redeemer.

Grant then, O God, where'er men roam,
That, when the church-bells are ringing,
Many in saving faith may come
Where Christ His message is bringing:
"I know Mine own, Mine own know Me;
Ye, not the world, My face shall see.
My peace I leave with you." Amen.