Tag Archives: thank you

There Is A Redeemer

There is a Redeemer,
Jesus, God’s own Son;
precious Lamb of God, Messiah,
Holy One.
Thank you, O my Father,
for giving us your Son,
and leaving your Spirit
till the work on earth is done.

Jesus, my Redeemer,
name above all names,
precious Lamb of God, Messiah,
hope for sinners slain.
Thank you, O my Father,
for giving us your Son,
and leaving your Spirit
till the work on earth is done.

When I stand in glory
I will see his face;
there I’ll serve my King forever
in that holy place.
Thank you, O my Father,
for giving us your Son,
and leaving your Spirit
till the work on earth is done.

Words and Music by Melody Green, 1982

 


I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.
Job 19:25

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
Matthew 1:21

If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God.
1 John 4:15

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
John 1:29

But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
John 20:31

This is what the Lord says — your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.
Isaiah 48:17

Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:9 – 11

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8

They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads.
Revelation 22:4


 

As we enter the Lenten season we begin to prepare ourselves for the remembrance of Holy Week and the joyous celebration of Easter. With this in mind I want to take these weeks to reflect on the incredible gift that God has given us through his sacrifice and resurrection. The gift of redemption, for those who have put their faith in Christ have a Redeemer. We are reminded of this in the simple, and beautiful words of “There is a Redeemer.”

The words begin by reflecting on different titles for Jesus. The first verse reads “There is a Redeemer, Jesus, God’s own Son; precious Lamb of God, Messiah, Holy One.” When we look at each of these titles, we begin to have revealed a full picture of our Savior.

We have a “Redeemer”, the one who paid the price we owed and restores us to fellowship with God. Job, who had everything taken from him, could stand and say in chapter 19, verse 25, “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.”

“Jesus”, the name we know the Savior by, is in fact the Greek form of the name Joshua (Yeshua) meaning Salvation. This is why the angel told Joseph in Matthew 1:21, “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

It continues with the words, “God’s own Son”. Jesus is the Son of God. 1 John 4:15 tells us that “If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God.”

Next we find the title, “Lamb of God.” A direct reference to the sacrificial system for making atonement for sin. In John 1:29 we read the words proclaimed by the John the Baptist when he “saw Jesus coming toward him and said, ‘Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!’” Jesus is the atoning sacrifice for the sins in our lives.

“Messiah” and its Greek counterpart, Christ, refer to the prophesied deliverer of Israel. The anointed one of God. Jesus is the prophesied deliverer. John 20:31 tells us,“But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

He is the “ Holy One”, the one who is set apart. Isaiah 48:17 tells us, “This is what the Lord says — your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the Lord your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.” God Himself is the Holy One.

Each of these titles carries great weight and meaning. Each tells us of the characteristics of Jesus. When we take time to understand these titles we come to a profound understanding that He has a “name above all names.” A truth that is shared by Paul in Philippians 2:9 – 11 which says, “Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Yes, He is the “Redeemer, Jesus, God’s own Son; precious Lamb of God, Messiah, Holy One.” For these reasons and so many more, He is not simply someone to be praise, He is “hope for sinners.” A hope that is founded in His great sacrifice, for he was “slain” that we might live. This is the message of Romans 5:8 which tells us that “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

It is this hope that we can stand in. We can know that we “will see his face” and that we will “serve (our) King forever in that holy place.” A promise to all who believe. As the Bible comes to a close in Revelation 22 we read in verse 4 that, “They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads.”

God has given us hope. Hope that is not based in wishful thinking, but in the truth the Jesus is our redeemer. And in a final thought we are reminded that through all of this, we are not left alone. The Holy Spirit dwells within those who have put their trust in Jesus. So we join with other expressing the feeling in our hearts, “Thank you, O my Father, for giving us your Son, and leaving your Spirit till the work on earth is done.”

 

 

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Thank We All Our God

Now thank we all our God, with heart and hands and voices,
Who wondrous things has done, in Whom this world rejoices;
Who from our mothers’ arms has blessed us on our way
With countless gifts of love, and still is ours today.

O may this bounteous God through all our life be near us,
With ever joyful hearts and blessèd peace to cheer us;
And keep us in His grace, and guide us when perplexed;
And free us from all ills, in this world and the next!

All praise and thanks to God the Father now be given;
The Son and Him Who reigns with Them in highest Heaven;
The one eternal God, whom earth and Heaven adore;
For thus it was, is now, and shall be evermore.

Words by Martin Rinkart, 1636
Music by Johann Cruger, 1647

 


Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.

Psalm 118:1

Let us lift up our hearts and our hands to God in heaven
Lamentations 3:41

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
Colossians 3:16

The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
Psalm 145:8

let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.
Hebrews 10:22


 

From the time we are young our parents taught us to say, Thank you. These two simple words communicate so much. When we receive something, a gift, a compliment, a favor, we say it. It is a way of expressing appreciation for things we receive.

But more often than not it seems to simply be an after thought.  Something we casually throw out because it is the cultural norm.  We don’t stop to think about what we are saying, so in the end it has not real meaning. But then there are those time, though they may be few and far between, that the words are genuine and heart-felt.  They do not come close to relaying the gratitude that is felt and so their meaning carries a profound depth. This is the theme of Martin Rinkart’s, “Now Thank We All Our God.”

Starting with the opening line of the hymn, “Now thank we all our God,” we are drawn in to see our need to express thankfulness to God. We “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.” (Psalm 118:1) We give thanks for what He has done. A thankfulness that is not simply expressed in words but comes from our full being. So Rinkart writes, “with heart and hands and voices.” reflecting the words of Jeremiah in Lamentations 3:41 where we read, “Let us lift up our hearts and our hands to God in heaven.”

Yes, we are to express our deepest gratitude to him. Gratitude to a God “who wondrous things has done, in Whom this world rejoices.” We rejoice in God, “who from our mothers’ arms has blessed us on our way. With countless gifts of love, and still is ours today.” He has always and will always be there. He alone is our source of joy and true hope.

When we honestly stop to reflect, there is so much that God has given us for which we are grateful. When we stop to realize this, we cannot help but pray that His blessings do not end. This is why Rinkart writes, “O may this bounteous God through all our life be near us.” We pray that God will not leave us and we can rest confidently in the knowledge that, “he will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6)

So we thank God for all he has done. We thank Him for his blessings. We thank him that he will always remain near to us. We lift our voice up to him with “All praise and thanks to God the Father . . . The Son and Him Who reigns with Them in highest Heaven.

 

 

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Count Your Blessings

When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings. Wealth can never buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be disheartened, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Words by Johnson Oatman Jr., 1897
Music by Edwin O. Excell,

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”
Ephesians 1:3 – 6

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. . .
The Lord is with me; he is my helper. I look in triumph on my enemies . . .
The Lord is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things! The Lord’s right hand is lifted high; the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!” . . .
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.
Psalm 118: 1, 7, 14 – 16, 29

but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.
Matthew 6:20

Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s
Psalm 103:2 – 5

Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced,
Psalm 105:1 – 5

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Matthew 11:29 – 30

“For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake, But My lovingkindness will not be removed from you, And My covenant of peace will not be shaken,” Says the LORD who has compassion on you. “O afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted, Behold, I will set your stones in antimony, And your foundations I will lay in sapphires. “Moreover, I will make your battlements of rubies, And your gates of crystal, And your entire wall of precious stones.…
Isaiah 54:10-12


 

Anyone who has ever worked a job in retail, purchasing or a stock room is probably familiar with the idea of inventory.  I used to maintain a parts room for a maintenance shop and part of my job included verifying how many items we had on the shelf and tracking what went in and out.

Now as much work as that may have seemed, it was nothing when compared to one of my wife’s previous jobs.  She worked for a truck dealership and once a year they would set aside days to physically count every part in stock, no matter how small or insignificant. And this was not simply those who dealt with the parts, but it included everyone who worked for the company.  They did this because they realized it was important.  It was the only way to know what they really had

Taking inventory is key to knowing what you have and is the theme of Johnson Oatman Jr.”s “Count Your Blessings.”  Now most of us have probably heard this hymn, and yes the tune can seem a little dated/cheesy (especially when done at a higher tempo) but the theme is solid.

The first stanza reads, “When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost.” I don’t know about you, but I’ve been there.  Those times when everything seems to be going wrong.  Times when you don’t know what to do and it seems you can not keep your head above water. I have found that it is at these times when this theme can be pivotal in standing against the storm. To know that you have someone to fall back onto.

He goes on to write in the second Stanza, “Are you ever burdened with a load of care? Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?” The reality is that the tempest come in many forms. Sometime they come not simply through your hardships, but in your responsibilities.  Who has not hit that wall before in their life.  Working hard and doing your job the best you can, just to get worn thin and find yourself at the point of saying, “I can’t do it anymore. It’s just too much.”   It is at this point that counting our blessing can remind us that we are not alone, that Christ is right there with us.

In the third stanza he writes, “When you look at others with their lands and gold.” Envy is a dangerous thing.  You see when we simply look at how much everyone else has, it is so easy for us to forget what we have.  We should not have our focus on others, but on the blessings God has given us.  When our focus is on our blessings, then the things others have begin to seem not so shiny.

Now, whether you believe it or not, God has given blessings to both you and me.  Ephesians 1:3 tells us, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.” Now I can not begin to list all these blessings, and many of them are different for each of us. They might be friends, they might family, they might be physical, they might be spiritual. As I said, this list could go on and on.

If we look at Psalm 103:2 – 5 we read, “Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”  Understand that I am certainly not saying that this is and exhaustive or definitive list.  Rather, it list some of the basic blessing God grants to those who follow him.

Yes, if we are truly honest we will see that we have been blessed in so many different ways. We need not surrender to despair.  So the hymn reminds us that “amid the conflict whether great or small, Do not be disheartened, God is over all.” So take some time to “Count your blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.”

 

Read more about “Count Your Blessings.”

A Memorial Day thought for 2012

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Arlington Cemetery, July 2015

I am not going to take too much time here.  I simply want to remind you that Memorial Day is here once again.  A day when many celebrate the start of the summer.  A time of picnics and barbeques.  And there is nothing wrong with this, so enjoy your celebration.

But somewhere in the midst, stop and take time to think of those who paid the ultimate price to allow us to enjoy these blessings.  Those who gave their lives for people they never knew.

So let us take a moment of silence to remember those we can never thank.  And let us honor their sacrifice by remembering to thank those we still can, for their service.