O Worship The King

Thunder-CloudsO worship the King, all glorious above,
O gratefully sing His power and His love;
Our Shield and Defender, the Ancient of Days,
Pavilioned in splendor, and girded with praise.

O tell of His might, O sing of His grace,
Whose robe is the light, whose canopy space,
His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form,
And dark is His path on the wings of the storm.

The earth with its store of wonders untold,
Almighty, Thy power hath founded of old;
Established it fast by a changeless decree,
And round it hath cast, like a mantle, the sea.

Thy bountiful care, what tongue can recite?
It breathes in the air, it shines in the light;
It streams from the hills, it descends to the plain,
And sweetly distills in the dew and the rain.

Frail children of dust, and feeble as frail,
In Thee do we trust, nor find Thee to fail;
Thy mercies how tender, how firm to the end,
Our Maker, Defender, Redeemer, and Friend.

O measureless might! Ineffable love!
While angels delight to worship Thee above,
The humbler creation, though feeble their lays,
With true adoration shall all sing Thy praise.

Words by Robert Grant, 1833 (based on lyrics by William Kethe, 1561)
Music by Johann Haydn, (1737 – 1806)

 


 

Praise the Lord, my soul. Lord my God, you are very great; you are clothed with splendor and majesty. The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment; he stretches out the heavens like a tent and lays the beams of his upper chambers on their waters. He makes the clouds his chariot and rides on the wings of the wind. He makes winds his messengers, flames of fire his servants.
Psalm 104:1 – 4

Just as a father has compassion on his children, So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him. For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust.
Psalm 103:13 – 14

LORD, don’t hold back your tender mercies from me. Let your unfailing love and faithfulness always protect me.
Psalm 40:11

Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker.
Psalm 95:6

But God is my helper. The Lord is my defender.
Psalm 54:4

Our Redeemer–the LORD Almighty is his name– is the Holy One of Israel.
Isaiah 47:4

I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
John 15:15


 

I love the hymns of the church. I love how they express such substance and feeling. There are some that teach deep theological truths. Some hymns look to the joys of heaven to come. Still others speak to our situations in life. But sometimes, we need to stop and simply see God for who He is and who we are to him. This is a theme of Robert Grant’s, “O Worship The King.”

As I go through Grant’s hymn, there are two things that draw my attention. The first is the elaborate description given of God and His majesty. He writes, “O tell of His might, O sing of His grace, Whose robe is the light, whose canopy space, His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form, And dark is His path on the wings of the storm.”

What an incredible word picture that he draws straight from Scripture. In Psalm 1:4 we read, “. . . The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment; he stretches out the heavens like a tent . . . He makes the clouds his chariot and rides on the wings of the wind. . .” God is worthy to be praised.

This then leads to the second part to which I am drawn. The counter to the image of a God who is to be praised. Grant writes, “Frail children of dust, and feeble as frail, In Thee do we trust, nor find Thee to fail; Thy mercies how tender, how firm to the end,
Our Maker, Defender, Redeemer, and Friend.”

Yes, God is worthy to be praised, yet in contrast, we are nothing. And even though we are nothing, God has compassion on us. He knows our weakness. Psalm 103:14 tells us, “that He is mindful that we are but dust.”

Knowing this, He shows His compassion for us. In Psalm 40:11 we read, “LORD, don’t hold back your tender mercies from me. Let your unfailing love and faithfulness always protect me.” Yes, we are but dust, but God’s mercy reaches to us. He watches over us, protects us and meets our every need, for He is our Maker (Psalm 95:6), Defender (Psalm 54:4), Redeemer (Isaiah 47:4) and Friend (John 15:15).

When we come to realize, despite who we are, that the Almighty Creator of the universe cares for us. When we understand that we can turn to Him to lean on and find strength, what else can we do? We are compelled to sing His praise. We declare with ardent fervor the opening words of the hymn, “O worship the King, all glorious above, O gratefully sing His power and His love.”

 

 

Read more about “O Worship The King.”

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