Is He Worthy

Do you feel the world is broken?
(We do)
Do you feel the shadows deepen?
(We do)
But do you know that all the dark won’t stop the light from getting through?
(We do)
Do you wish that you could see it all made new?
(We do)

Is all creation groaning?
(It is)
Is a new creation coming?
(It is)
Is the glory of the Lord to be the light within our midst?
(It is)
Is it good that we remind ourselves of this?
(It is)

Is anyone worthy?
Is anyone whole?
Is anyone able to break the seal and open the scroll?
The Lion of Judah who conquered the grave
He is David’s root and the Lamb who died to ransom the slave

Is He worthy? Is He worthy?
Of all blessing and honor and glory
Is He worthy of this?
He is

Does the Father truly love us?
(He does)
Does the Spirit move among us?
(He does)
And does Jesus, our Messiah hold forever those He loves?
(He does)
Does our God intend to dwell again with us?
(He does)

Is anyone worthy?
Is anyone whole?
Is anyone able to break the seal and open the scroll?
The Lion of Judah who conquered the grave
He is David’s root and the Lamb who died to ransom the slave
From every people and tribe
Every nation and tongue
He has made us a kingdom and priests to God
To reign with the Son

Is He worthy? Is He worthy?
Of all blessing and honor and glory
Is He worthy? Is He worthy?
Is He worthy of this?
He is!
Is He worthy? Is He worthy?
He is!
He is!

—Songwriters: Andrew Peterson / Ben Shive
Is He Worthy? Lyrics © The Bicycle Music Company, Music Services, Inc

Whate’er My God Ordains Is Right

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
His holy will abideth;
I will be still whate’er He does,
And follow where He guideth.
He is my God, though dark my road;
He holds me that I shall not fall;
And so to Him I leave it all,
And so to Him I leave it all.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
He never will deceive me;
He leads me by the proper path,
I know He will not leave me.
I take, content, what He has sent;
His hand can turn my griefs away;
And patiently I wait His day,
And patiently I wait His day.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
Though now this cup in drinking
May bitter seem to my faint heart,
I take it all, unshrinking.
My God is true, each morn anew
Sweet comfort yet shall fill my heart;
And pain and sorrow shall depart,
And pain and sorrow shall depart.

Whate’er my God ordains is right,
Here shall my stand be taken;
Though sorrow, need, or death be mine,
Yet I am not forsaken.
My Father’s care is round me there;
He holds me that I shall not fall;
And so to Him I leave it all,
And so to Him I leave it all.

— Samuel Rodigast (1675), tr. Catherine Winkworth (1829-1878)

Via: Matt Merker

Living Hope

How great the chasm that lay between us
How high the mountain I could not climb
In desperation, I turned to heaven
And spoke Your name into the night
Then through the darkness, Your lovingkindness
Tore through the shadows of my soul
The work is finished, the end is written
Jesus Christ, my living hope

Who could imagine so great a mercy
What heart could fathom such boundless grace
The God of ages stepped down from glory
To wear my sin and bear my shame
The cross has spoken, I am forgiven
The King of kings calls me His own
Beautiful Savior, I’m Yours forever
Jesus Christ, my living hope

Hallelujah, praise the One who set me free
Hallelujah, death has lost its grip on me
You have broken every chain
There’s salvation in Your name
Jesus Christ, my living hope

Then came the morning that sealed the promise
Your buried body began to breathe
Out of the silence, the Roaring Lion
Declared the grave has no claim on me
Jesus, Yours is the victory!

Hallelujah, praise the One who set me free
Hallelujah, death has lost its grip on me
You have broken every chain
There’s salvation in Your name
Jesus Christ, my living hope

—Songwriters: Phil Wickham / Brian Mark Johnson
Living Hope lyrics © Essential Music Publishing, Bethel Music Publishing

This Is My Father’s World

So glad we sang this beautiful hymn today during the worship service at Kenwood Baptist Church – it is one of my favorites.

This is my Father’s world,
and to my listening ears
all nature sings, and round me rings
the music of the spheres.
This is my Father’s world:
I rest me in the thought
of rocks and trees, of skies and seas;
his hand the wonders wrought.

This is my Father’s world,
the birds their carols raise,
the morning light, the lily white,
declare their maker’s praise.
This is my Father’s world:
he shines in all that’s fair;
in the rustling grass I hear him pass;
he speaks to me everywhere.

This is my Father’s world.
O let me ne’er forget
that though the wrong seems oft so strong,
God is the ruler yet.

This is my Father’s world:
why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is King; let the heavens ring!
God reigns; let the earth be glad!

—Words by Maltbie D. Babcock and music adapted by Franklin L. Sheppard

The King of Love My Shepherd Is

The King of love my shepherd is,
whose goodness faileth never.
I nothing lack if I am his,
and he is mine forever.

Where streams of living water flow,
my ransomed soul he leadeth;
and where the verdant pastures grow,
with food celestial feedeth.

Perverse and foolish, oft I strayed,
but yet in love he sought me;
and on his shoulder gently laid,
and home, rejoicing, brought me.

In death’s dark vale I fear no ill,
with thee, dear Lord, beside me;
thy rod and staff my comfort still,
thy cross before to guide me.

Thou spreadst a table in my sight;
thy unction grace bestoweth;
and oh, what transport of delight
from thy pure chalice floweth!

And so through all the length of days,
thy goodness faileth never;
Good Shepherd, may I sing thy praise
within thy house forever.

—Henry W. Baker, 1868

Be Thou My Vision

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art.
Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord;
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Be Thou my battle Shield, Sword for the fight;
Be Thou my Dignity, Thou my Delight;
Thou my soul’s Shelter, Thou my high Tower:
Raise Thou me heavenward, O Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise,
Thou mine Inheritance, now and always:
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of Heaven, my victory won,
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heaven’s Sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.

—Words at­trib­ut­ed to Dal­lan For­gaill, 8th Cen­tu­ry

No Grave Could Keep

We sang this beautiful song yesterday during the Easter worship service at Kenwood Baptist Church. It was written by our Associate Pastor of Worship, Matt Damico.

No Grave Could Keep
by Matt Damico

Verse 1
The Maker of all, in a young virgin’s womb,
the Word, now a baby, cries.
In humility robed, in the form a slave,
the Lord of life come to die.

Verse 2
The Judge of mankind, now placed on a trial,
the guilt of His people now His.
The righteous one bears these thorns for a crown,
that sinners found in Him might live.

Refrain:
Mighty Savior!
Death could not hold Him, no grave could keep.
Hallelujah!
He reigns forever, the risen King!

Verse 3
Lifted and nailed to a cross where He died,
the record of sin, now paid.
But look for Him not, for the Man is not there,
the King is alive, as He said.

Verse 4
The bride now awaits for her King to appear,
when she will in purity rise.
And on that fair day, His praises we’ll sing,
our heart’s trust beheld with our eyes.

Come Behold the Wondrous Mystery

The worship team at Kenwood Baptist Church sang a beautiful new hymn today before communion. The hymn is titled “Come Behold the Wondrous Mystery” and is on Matt Papa’s latest album called Look & Live.

Come behold the wondrous mystery
In the dawning of the King
He the theme of heavens praises
Robed in frail humanity
In our longing, in our darkness
Now the light of life has come
Look to Christ, who condescended
Took on flesh to ransom us

Come behold the wondrous mystery
He the perfect Son of Man
In His living, in His suffering
Never trace nor stain of sin
See the true and better Adam
Come to save the hell-bound man
Christ the great and sure fulfillment
Of the law; in Him we stand

Come behold the wondrous mystery
Christ the Lord upon the tree
In the stead of ruined sinners
Hangs the Lamb in victory
See the price of our redemption
See the Father’s plan unfold
Bringing many sons to glory
Grace unmeasured, love untold

Come behold the wondrous mystery
Slain by death the God of life
But no grave could e’er restrain Him
Praise the Lord; He is alive!
What a foretaste of deliverance
How unwavering our hope
Christ in power resurrected
As we will be when he comes

—Matt Papa, Matt Boswell, Michael Bleecker
© 2013 Love Your Enemies Publishing

The Long Goodnight

One of my favorite songs on the album Watch the Rising Day by Matthew Smith is “Goodnight.” It’s a song written from the standpoint of a christian on their deathbed who is giving hope and solace to their loved ones. The words come from an old German hymn of unknown authorship which was later translated by Jane Borthwick. It was printed in Hymns from the Land of Luther under the title “The Long Goodnight.”

My granmother’s funeral service is later this morning and when I said goodbye to her last Saturday I don’t know if she recognized me. However, I will never forget what she told me the last time I was talking with her. We’d spent the morning visiting and as I was getting ready to leave I told her that I loved her and she told me she loved me too. She said, “I’ve loved you for a long time. I loved you before I even knew you.” I know that it’s true. I know that she loved me and prayed for me before I ever took my first breath – and she never stopped. I can’t wait to see her again in glory.

I journey forth rejoicing
From this dark vale of tears
To heavenly joy and freedom
From earthly bonds and fears
Where Christ our Lord shall gather
All His redeemed again,
His kingdom to inherit
Goodnight, goodnight till then

Why thus so sadly weeping
Beloved ones of my heart?
The Lord is good and gracious
Though now He bids us part
Oft have we met in gladness
And we shall meet again
All sorrow left behind us
Goodnight, goodnight till then

I go to see His glory
Whom we have loved below
I go, the blessed angels
The holy saints to know.
Our lovely ones departed
I go to find again
And wait for you to join us
Goodnight, goodnight till then

I hear the Savior calling,
The joyful hour has come
The angel-guards are ready
To guide me to our home
Where Christ our Lord shall gather
All His redeemed again,
His kingdom to inherit
Goodnight, goodnight till then

—Matthew S. Smith
Based in part on a hymn text by an unknown
German writer, translated by Jane Borthwick