DiM | “My Victory” by Crowder

ApprovedCCM Edition.

October 25, 2016. Today we’ll be taking a look at “My Victory” by Crowder which currently sits at #16 on 20TheCountdownMagazine.

Today’s song lyric brings us Christ crucified for our sins. It’s a wonderful song, minus one squirrely line in the second verse. Let’s give it a listen and then discuss the theology we see in the lyric of this song.

Crowder VEVO (Lyric Video)

Lyrics (via K-Love)

You came for Criminals
And every Pharisee
You came for Hypocrites
Even one like me
You carried sin and shame
The guilt of every man
The weight of all I’ve done
Nailed into your hands

Oh your love
Bled for me
Oh your blood
In crimson streams
Oh your death
Is Hell’s defeat
A cross meant to kill is my victory

Oh your amazing grace
I’ve seen and tasted it
It’s running through my veins
I can’t escape its grip
In you my soul is safe
You cover everything

Behold the lamb of God
Who takes away our sin
The holy Lamb of God
Makes us alive again

Publishing: © 2016 SIXSTEPS MUSIC/WORSHIPTOGETHER COM SONGS/INOT MUSIC (ADMIN. AT CAPITOLCMGPUBLISHING.COM)/ALL ESSENTIAL MUSIC/BENTLEY STREET SONGS (ASCAP) (ADMIN. BY ESSENTIAL MUSIC PUBLISHING LLC)/ALLETROP MUSIC/DAYSPRING MUSIC, LLC (BMI)
Writer(s): David Crowder, Ed Cash, Hank Bentley and Darren Mulligan

Discussion

Bridge. Let’s start with the Bridge of the song, because this is a beautiful quote of John the Baptist’s bold proclamation of Jesus as the Lamb of God.

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

Let’s look at how the Gospel According to John opens up, noting how the Apostle wrote concerning Jesus and concerning John the Baptist:

John 1:1-13 (ESV) | The Word Became Flesh

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light.

The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Amen. Now, let’s move to the first verse of the song.

Verse 1. Jesus came to save the world, to take away our sin. Not just those we like, but for those we don’t like. The Criminal and the Pharisee alike. This song does a great job of leveling out the playing field. Crowder hits the 2 hardest categories, then extends it to the Hypocrite and then places himself right there in the middle of the sinners.We are sinners. We sin because we are sinners. Christ died to atone for our sin, to pay a price we couldn’t pay for sin that wasn’t His, to grant us Grace we don’t deserve. This is a great start to the song. I love that Crowder used the word “guilt” here. Sure, it is possible to emotionalize the term to try to soften its objectivity, but our guilt is real, whether we “feel it” or not. It is the objective pronouncement of the Law upon us… we stand guilty, we are born guilty, dead in our sins and trespasses. It was for our guilt, that Christ was nailed to the cross.

Chorus. The chorus focuses on the redemptive power of the Blood of the Lamb. A wonderful Epistle to spend some time studying both before and after studying the Mosaic Covenant is the book of Hebrews.

Hebrews 9:11-14 (ESV) | Redemption Through the Blood of Christ

But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.

Hebrews 9:22 (ESV) Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.

The cross meant to kill Jesus, to silence the threat to Pharisaical rule under Pilate… ends up being our Salvation, through the Redemption bought by His Blood. Indeed, the cross is our Victory in Jesus’ Name.

1 Corinthians 2:1-5 (ESV) | Proclaiming Christ Crucified

And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.

Verse 2. Okay, now this verse I think gets a little bit squirrely. The reference to having seen and tasted the Grace of God is most likely pulling from Peter’s Epistle. For most doctrinally sound Christians, this is a purely spiritual turn of phrase pointing to the Word of God. As Lutherans, we see recognize this as the Word of God, and also in the Lord’s Supper as an objective seeing and tasting of the Word, the Body and Blood of Christ. However you interpret the “seeing and tasting”, it’s important to see what Peter is teaching here:

1 Peter 2:1-12 (ESV) | A Living Stone and a Holy People

So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation— if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.

As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture:

“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,
a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”

So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,

“The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone,”

and

“A stone of stumbling,
and a rock of offense.”

They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.

 

Getting back to the second verse of this song, it’s the next line where I think the theology gets squirrelly and, frankly, I can’t find a nice way to correct it other than saying “no”. Christ’s blood isn’t running in our veins. We have been baptized into Christ’s death and resurrection (Romans 6), we have been washed by Christ (Eph 5), made alive in Christ (Eph 2, 1 Cor 15)… but Christ’s Blood doesn’t run in our veins. Our bodies are still sinful flesh. Notice how Peter wrote of us as sojourners and exiles, encouraging us to abstain from the passions of the flesh. Our flesh is still sinful. Our hearts are still sinful. But we are also a new creation in Christ. This is that paradox of the Christian life, being simultaneously justified in Christ and sinners in the flesh. So, while I like this song overall, I do not like this line about Christ’s blood in our veins. I think it is a misstep.

Conclusion

I’ve given this song an overall Approval, though I take issue with that one line in the second verse. The song declares Jesus (“Behold the Lamb of God who takes away our sin”), our guilt under the Law and the Redemption by the Blood of Christ. Hell is defeated by Christ’s finished work on the Cross. There is a lot of good theological meat in the lyric of this song. I’m very pleased to be adding another song to our approved list.

Hebrews 13:20-21 (ESV) | Benediction

Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Amen.
In Christ Jesus,
Jorge

DiM | “Mended” by Matthew West

disapproveCCM Edition.

September 27, 2016. Today we’ll be taking a look at “Mended” by Matthew West which currently sits at #20 on 20TheCountdownMagazine.

This song is written as a sort of love song from God to the Christian. As such, Matthew West is speaking in the place of God to offer encouragement to the listener. I generally advise against this approach because it leaves room to speak in God’s Name what He hasn’t spoken (runs the risk of blasphemy). There are some themes in this song that I have no doubt many find personally engouraging and even precious. Please understand that we understand there are specific hurts that need to be addressed, but we need to address them Biblically. I’m not discrediting the hurts that this song is targeting. We all have real hurts. Rather than having someone like Matthew West put words in God’s mouth, we really should be pointed to God’s Word and His Promises. Let’s watch the lyric video and then dive into the lyrics.

MatthewWestVEVO (Lyric Video)

Another hyper-individualistic music video. One hurting person struggling alone, the singer (also alone) offering words of comfort to the hurting person. Christianity isn’t an individualistic thing. Christians are not individuals unto themselves; rather, we are members of the Body of Christ. Interconnected and corporately engaged as the Bride of Christ. We are the sheep, Jesus is the Good Shepherd. A sheep on its own is lost. Wolves seek to islate and seperate a lamb from the flock, so that they can devour it in solitude without having to deal with the Shepherd. We’ll deal with the lyrics now, but I wanted to address what seems to be a growing trend. A spirituality that marginalizes the Body of Christ and emphasizes the individual experience leads into the snare of mysticism. This is a dangerous trend in American Evangelicalism.

Lyrics (via KLove)

How many times can one heart break?
It was never supposed to be this way
Look in the mirror, but you find someone
You never thought you’d be

Oh, but I can still recognize
The one I love in your tear stained eyes
I know you might not see it now
So lift your eyes to me

When you see broken beyond repair
I see healing beyond belief
When you see too far gone
I see one step away from home
You see nothing but damaged goods
I see something good in the making
I’m not finished yet
When you see wounded, I see mended

You see your worst mistake
But I see the price I paid
There’s nothing you could ever do
To lose what grace has won

So hold on, it’s not the end
This is where love’s work begins
I’m making all things new
And I will make a miracle of you

I see my child, My beloved
The new creation you’re becoming
You see the scars from when you fell
But I see the stories they will tell
You see worthless, but I see priceless
You see pain, but I see a purpose
You see unworthy, undeserving
But I see you through eyes of mercy

Publishing: © 2015 Highly Combustible Music/Atlas Music Publishing/House Of Story Music (ASCAP) All rights administered by Atlas Music Publishing obo itself, Highly Combustible Music and House Of Story Music.
Writer: Matthew West

Discussion

The song is presented in a parental tone like a song of encouragement. I think the first time I listened to the song I was hoping the singer was going to be in the role of parent, big brother, or even a Pastor. But the final line in some of the stanzas remove that understanding of it, lines like “So lift your eyes to me” and “I will make a miracle of you”. So, the singer is speaking in the place of God. The listener is someone who is hurting. No mention of repentance, faith, just hurting and what society would call a “broken self image”. Is the hurt real? Yes. Do Christians still suffer from broken self image? Yes. Christians still struggle with sin and its consequences. We still live in a broken world and walk in broken flesh. So whether the person being sung to (the woman in the video) is a believer or an unbeliever the answer to the struggle being presented is the Gospel of Jesus Christ, repentance and the forgiveness of sins. For the Christian, it becomes ever so important to emphasize “your sins are forgiven”. When Satan cannot prevent the Gospel from being preached to an individual, he shifts into full accuser mode, lying to the believer prompting and prodding him to believe that now its up to the believer to maintain his own salvation. But that is not how the enemy is conquered. Christ has already defeated sin, death and the devil.

Revelation 12:10-11 (ESV) And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, forthey loved not their lives even unto death.

The word of their testimony is not a testiment of themselves or who they’ve become; rather, it is the word of their testimony of who Christ Is.

Verse 1
The first four lines are odd as far as who is the one voicing these thoughts. Is the singer anticipating the questions in the audience’s mind? We’ll suspend this question a bit for the sake of artistry. What’s the dilemma being presented? Disappointment. We could assume “failure” or “misfortune”, but the wording is intentionally vague, because the point of this lyric is to apply to as broad a spectrum of emotional hurting as possible. Right or wrong, at this point we can only put our finger on disappointment in what the listener sees in the mirror, because it doesn’t match what the listener thought “should be”. The next four lines facilitate the turn from the problem to the proposed solution without offering any clarity. The song is banking on the listener finding their own struggle in this first verse and then rightly coopting the solution for themselves. Is it a sin to turn out differently from what you thought you’d be? Not necessarily. In some cases, the sin could be in what you’ve become… or the sin could be in the desire of being something you aren’t.  The song is vague and completely wide open for any interpretation… because the focal point isn’t a knowlege of sin but the emotion of disappointment.

Chorus
Well, this chorus could almost be a Joel Osteen lecture set to music. Rather than offering up the objective truth of God’s Word, the song engages in reshaping what we “see”. This is supposed to be voicing from God’s perspective. The problem is it’s still speaking of things only as potential truths. God’s Word isn’t written in potentials. God has revealed Himself in Scripture, and His Promises are True. Our forgiveness is assured in Christ Jesus. Our resurrection is also assured in Christ Jesus. What is this song offering as the solution to the problem? An unseen progression of mending and goodness. It’s a very “positive” declaration of “you’re looking at it the wrong way”. Just change how you look at it, how you think about it, and you’ll see. Seriously, this is very Joel Osteen here.

Verse 2
At least here we’re getting close to the idea of sin. Sin is the central problem to all of this temporal life. All of it. Sin. Not mistakes, sin. Our flesh is sinful. Our hearts are sinful. The solution isn’t some hidden potential within us… the solution is Christ and His Blood that was shed for the forgiveness of sin. The song that won’t name sin, cannot offer forgiveness. We get that here, too. Still a perception only sort of problem here. You see it one way, but God sees it another way, so it’s all good, you’ll see… someday. The last four lines of this verse are quite bold. This is where love’s work begins? In this emotion? No. Constantly moving the goal posts is not the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We don’t encourage Christians to keep looking for the moment they feel saved, we point them back to the It is Finished when Christ secured their salvation.

Romans 6:1-14 (ESV) | Dead to Sin, Alive to God

What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old selfwas crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.

Notice how Paul isn’t talking about your baptism or your Salvation in “potential” terms; rather, he’s working forward from what God has already done for you. This is what it means to preach the Gospel to believers. To remind them of what God has already done for them, that He has already paid the penalty, forgiven you of sin, and sealed you in His Righteousness. We do look forward to the Last Day, not for our own earthly perfection, but for the Day of the Resurrection.

1 Peter 1:3-5 (ESV) | Born Again to a Living Hope

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Instead of constantly looking for an indication you are saved, or an internal aknowledgement that you’ve been mended, trust in the Work Christ has done to save you.

Now, to the hurting, the discouraged, the disappointed, and even the depressed… place your hope and trust in Christ Jesus, who laid down His life for you, for the forgiveness of your sin, so that He can clothe you in His Righteosness. So that by His Grace, through Faith, God no longer sees your unrightousness… He sees His Son, Jesus Christ. He’s not relying on your “potential”, He sees Christ.

Isaiah 61:10 (ESV)
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord;
my soul shall exult in my God,
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation;
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

Ephesians 5:25-27 (ESV)
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.

We, the Church, the corporate Body of Christ, are His Bride. He washes us, cleanses us, sanctifies us, clothes us, and covers us in Salvation and Righteousness, to present us to Himself holy and without blemish. This is made objectively clear in God’s Written Word, despite what you feel. When your feelings betray you, hold onto the objective Word of God.

Conclusion

This song is trying to do a good thing, but going about it sloppily. The hurting and the lowly in spirit need to be comforted. But we need to do so in Truth and we need to point them to God’s Word. It’s dangerous to start creatively speaking in God’s place. I disapprove of the approach and focus of this song, but not the goal. The goal was to offer encouragement to the broken and the weary. There is hope and comfort for all, and it isn’t something that has to be imagined, preach the Gospel to the believers, too. We need to hear that our sins are forgiven in Jesus’ Name, that we’ve been clothed by His righteosness. Call the haughty, arrogant, and proud to repentance through the preaching of the Law… but one who is aware of his/her sin needs the healing balm of the Gospel preached.

Romans 16:24-27 (ESV) | Doxology

Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mysterythat was kept secret for long ages but has now been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith— to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.

In Christ Jesus,
Jorge

DiM | “Magnify” by We Are Messengers

Presentation1CCM Edition.

September 20, 2016. Today we’ll be taking a look at “Magnify” by We Are Messengers which currently sits at #20 on 20TheCountdownMagazine.

Musically, the song is quite nice. Emotionally impactful. The singer has a great voice. Lyrically, the song is missing one major ingredient, the Bible. God’s Written Word. The revelation of Christ to His Church. This sort of Bible-less Christianity is the result of American Christianity having been infected by gnostic mysticism. To rescue this song, the listener needs to already know where to look to see Christ. Not in our emotions (not even the positive ones), not in nature (though it declares His Glory), but in the Word of God. As we read Scripture, we rely on God the Holy Spirit to open up our eyes to the Truth that is there, in plain sight. Let’s take a look at the Official Music Video and then the Lyrics.

Official Music Video

 

Lyrics (via Air1)

Verse 1
I’ve been trying to make sense of the sorrow that I feel
Holding on for life to the only thing that’s real
I’ve only scratched the surface, I’ve barely had a taste
But just a glimpse draws my heart to change
And one sight of you lays my sin to waste
I don’t need to see everything just more of you

(chorus)
Take it all, take it all away
Magnify no other name
Open up, open up my eyes
To you

Take it all, take it all away
Magnify no other name
Open up, open up my eyes
To you

Verse 2
My sight is incomplete and I’ve made you look small
I’ve been staring at my problems for way too long
Re-align where my hope is set, until you’re all that’s left
But just a glimpse draws my heart to change
And one sight of you lays my sin to waste
I don’t need to see everything just more of you

(chorus)
Take it all, take it all away
Magnify no other name
Open up, open up my eyes
To you

Take it all, take it all away
Magnify no other name
Open up, open up my eyes
To you

Bridge
Oh God be greater, than the worries in my life
Be stronger, than the weakness in my mind
Be louder, let your Glory come alive
Be magnified

Oh God be greater, than the worries in my life
Be stronger, than the weakness in my mind
Be louder, let your Glory come alive
Be magnified

(chorus)
Take it all, take it all away
Magnify no other name
Open up, open up my eyes
To you, to you

Take it all, take it all away
Magnify no other name
Open up, open up my eyes
To you, to you

Publishing: © 2015 Dayspring Music, LLC (BMI) / So Essential Tunes, Not Just Another Song Publishing (SESAC) (All rights on behalf of So Essential Tunes and Not Just Another Song Publishing adm. by Essential Music Publishing LLC) Produced by Jonathan Smith & Casey Brown
Writer(s): Darren Mulligan/Casey Brown/Jonathan Smith

Discussion

The problem being presented in the song is real. We, sinners, are distracted by our temptation to sin. To worry. To despair. It’s a very real problem that is addressed in Scripture. Let’s look at what Christ taught.

Matthew 6:25-33 (ESV)“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

What does it mean to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness? It means to seek Christ and Him crucified for your sin, repent and be forgiven in His Name. The righteousness of God is the forgiveness He gives to you in exchange for your sin. This is by faith alone in Christ’s finished work on the cross. When our flesh tempts us to earn our own righteousness by lawkeeping, well… that’s when the anxiety, fear, and condemnation sets in. Such is the concern we see the Apostle Paul having for the Galatians who were misled back into works-based righteousness by submitting to the Law of circumcision. Paul isn’t only concerned about this unnecessary surgical act, but in the return to Mosaic Law-keeping rather than faith in Christ Jesus.

Galatians 5:1-12 (ESV)  | Christ Has Set Us Free

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.

Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you. I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law. You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.

You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion is not from him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. I have confidence in the Lord that you will take no other view, and the one who is troubling you will bear the penalty, whoever he is. But if I, brothers, still preach circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been removed. I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!

These are extremely strong words from Paul, because this is a serious issue.

But, Jorge, what does this have to do with the song? Good question. This is only the first point I want to drive home, that Scripture teaches us to look to Christ and His kingdom rather than ourselves, our good works, our provisions… because to look to anything else is to be severed from Christ. If we’re giving this song its best construction, we have to view the over arching appeal of the song to be anchored in this truth. So, this is a strength in the concept of the song, that we are to be focused on Christ, not our circumstances, emotions, fears, or our own good works (or utter lack thereof).

The problem with the song is in its offered solution. It suggests that we are somehow supposed to see Christ directly. There is absolutely no mention of finding Him in His Word. The video doesn’t suggest it in any way… nor does it even suggest finding Christ among fellow believers gathered around the Preaching of God’s Word (definition of the Church). This is a giant hole in the theology of this song. To presume to see God apart from where He has revealed Himself is to engage in Mysticism. There is a bit of gnosticism rumbling in the background of this American ideology that is currently driving this closed-Bible Christianity, or even anti-Bible preaching of Andy Stanley.

It is important that we counter and guard against this gnostic mysticism. God has revealed Himself to us. Let’s examine this in steps. God the Father has revealed Himself fully in God the Son, Jesus.

John 14:1-9 (ESV) | I Am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

We don’t see Jesus in the flesh today, for He is in Heaven at the Right Hand of the Father. He will return. His Promise is sure. What we have is Christ fully revealed to us in Scripture. To make this case, I’d like to first pull a very clear teaching of Christ to His disciples, one from Luke’s account of the sending out of the Apostles, and another from John’s account of the night He was betrayed.

Luke 10:16 (ESV) “The one who hears you hears me, and the one who rejects you rejects me, and the one who rejects me rejects him who sent me.”

John 13:20 (ESV) Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

And where do we find the teaching of those whom Jesus sent? In the New Testament. Most of the Epistles were written by the Apostles themselves, and the others contain their teaching. Receive their teaching and you receive Christ. Receive Christ and you receive God the Father. How do we receive this? By the work of the Holy Spirit in preserving God’s Word, drawing us, granting us Faith, and delivering the forgiveness and the Righteousness of God (Jesus Christ) to us. He saves us by Grace through Faith.

Romans 10:17 (ESV) So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

The flip side of this is that if we reject the teaching of Christ’s Apostles we reject Christ and God the Father. Sidenote: There are no living Apostles. Only charlatans and blasphemers claiming a level of authority they weren’t given, making promises in the name of God that He doesn’t make, twisting scripture to gather disciples unto themselves. These are the same as those against whom Paul was writing to the Galatians. 

Is it wrong to want to see Christ? Absolutely not. We all long to see Him return in the way He has promised in His Word.

Acts 1:10-11 (ESV) And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”

But to attempt to reach around where Christ has told us to find Him (In His Word and in the teaching of His Apostles) is to repeat the error of Thomas.

John 20:28-31 (ESV) Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His Name.

So this is the great error of this song. The attempt to skip right over the Scriptures and to demand to see Christ directly. Those singing the song haven’t seen Him directly, yet they present this as the goal or solution to the problem being presented in the song.

Conclusion

On its own, the song lyric fails to present the Gospel in any meaningful way. However, if we reshape the arch of the song to have all points leading to the Scriptures as the sole solution to the problems presented, we can rescue most of the themes in this song. I’m happy that this song can be rescued, but frustrated that it relies solely on the listener’s solid theology to rescue.

Hebrews 13:20-21 (ESV) Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will,working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

In Christ Jesus,
Jorge

 

DiM | “To Live Is Christ” by Sidewalk Prophets

Presentation1CCM Edition.

August 30, 2016. Today we’ll be taking a look at “To Live Is Christ” by Sidewalk Prophets which currently sits at #4 on KLove’s Top 10 Songs.

This song is built around a line in Paul’s letter to the Philippians. What I really like about this song is that it reminded me of this passage of scripture. What bothers me is that it spends all of its time in lofty hypothetical narrative rather than tease out what Paul was saying in his letter. So this song could have been awesome. As it stands, I think it’s only as useful as its hearer is familiar with the first chapter of Philippians. So, we’ll dive into the text so that from here on out whenever you hear this song play on the radio, you should be all set to meditate on God’s Word directly, rather than the disjointed, vague (and slightly mystical) lines of this song.

 

Official Audio

 

Lyrics (via KLove)

If I rise, let me rise on You
Not on all my successes
My esteem or my pursuits
If I lose, let me lose my life
Cause if I belong to Jesus
The flesh is crucified

(chorus)
For me to live is Christ
For me to live is Christ
For me to live is Christ
To die is gain

If I grow, let me grow in You
Wilt the seeds of wanting more
Ripping pride out by the roots
If I’m still, let me hear You speak
Not the tone of my transgressions
But the song of the redeemed

(chorus)

My great desire is to be with You
But this is the place You chose for me
This is the place You chose for me
To lift my cross and give everything
This is the time You gave to me
This is the time You gave to me

(chorus)

I’ll never be the same
I’ll never be the same
For me to live is Christ
To die is gain

© 2015 Dayspring Music Publishing, LLC, Run Run Milo, Pencil Prophet Publishing (BMI) / Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Not Just Another Song Publishing (SESAC) (All rights on behalf of itself and Not Just Another Song Publishing adm. by Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC)
Written by: Ben McDonald / Dave Frey / Casey Brown / Jonathan Smith

Discussion

Verse 1. The first verse is vague. There is no clear doctrine being described or supported here, just lofty hypothetical, which serves a form of verbal piety, but doesn’t seem to have an anchor. The closest we get to a Gospel nugget is the line Cause if I belong to Jesus, but it’s in the hypothetical. What does it mean to belong to Jesus? You need to rightly understand the answer to that question for this to serve any comfort. There is a connection being made to having the flesh crucified, but there’s not real meaning and there is no clear order of statements or anchor for faith so what might be presented for the assurance of salvation may also be turned as a weapon of doubt. If I point you to the Word of God and the waters of your Baptism, your assurance is in the fact that God’s Word has declared  you washed, baptized into the death and resurrection of Christ, sealed by the Holy Spirit with the Promise of Salvation to be revealed at the Last Day. I realize there is no way to say all of that in a single verse of this song, I’m just being thorough for the purpose of this medium. The lines in the song don’t present a clear anchor in baptism, or in the Promise of Salvation through Faith in God’s Word, none of that. It’s merely a hanging “if”. Now, for those of you fully assured of your salvation, you might take the next line as encouragement… until the next time you are convicted of sin and have to ask the other side of this if. There’s the doubt that needs an object of faith that lies external to ourselves, a faith on the external Word of God, not our own “perfection”. There are concerns present in most evangelical songs, the concern of where vaguely alluding to the Gospel in some way might go wonky, so that rather than lead the hearer to Christ, it simply points the hearer to himself and his emotions and abilities. Granted, lines 2+3 seem to downplay the importance of our own abilities, but only hypothetically. The song isn’t saying my actions have no value, he’s saying “let me be lifted up by You not by my successes, my esteem, or pursuits”. What does that mean? The listener has nearly free rein to give those lines meaning, which is a weakness, not a strength with regards to communicating Truth.

While we’ve looked only at concerns in some of the wording, overall the first verse is disjointed from the passage in Philippians being invoked by the chorus. The hypotheticals in the first verse are not connected to the context of Philippians.

Chorus. For me to live is Christ, To die is gain. I’m not sure the repetition here is helpful. However, this line comes from the opening chapter in the Apostle Paul’s letter to the saints in Philipi. So let’s look at that chapter and focus on it before continuing through the song.

Philippians 1 (ESV)

1 Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the overseers and deacons:

2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

3-11 I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me of grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel. For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

Paul is writing to the Church in Philippi, all the saints with the overseers and deacons. There is a bad habit in popular evangelicalism to read scripture through our American hyper-individualism. While we do have individual responsibilities within the Body of Christ, these Epistles are primarily written to the Body of Christ, not just the hands or the feet. We are all connected by the body and blood of Christ, the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This is how Paul is talking to this church body, their partnership in the gospel, they are all partakers with Paul in his imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel. We are all one body, united in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

12-14 I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.

Here, Paul is instructing the church in how to properly view the trials of this life through the lens of the Gospel. This isn’t prosperity teaching nor is it some obnoxious “power of positive confession” nonsense, this is faith in the Gospel framing a proper worldview. Paul’s imprisonment is for Christ and for the sake of His Gospel. Paul is encouraging the Philippians in this Truth.

15-26 Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment.What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance,as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.

So, the first part of this section is often misused to silence any who would rebuke false teachers or seek to mark them publicly. I’ve highlighted the important phrases which highlight the key to rightly understanding the left and right limits of Paul’s statement here. Christ is being preached, Christ is being proclaimed. As long as Christ is being preached, Paul doesn’t care if those doing so are harboring some sort of ill will toward Paul, personally. It’s like saying, “yeah, I know that guy doesn’t like me, my personality, or the way I talk… but he is preaching and proclaiming Christ (rightly, is implied) so I can rejoice in the preaching of Christ and I don’t care that he’s doing it to spite me or anything”. Whenever Christ isn’t being preached rightly, Paul isn’t rejoicing in that nonsense… he’s quite aggressive, just read the letter to Galatians.

Now, noticed the line in the middle of the above passage which is where the chorus of the song is pulled. Paul goes on to explain what he means. He’s in prison, and is legitimately torn between wanting to be put to death so that he can be with Christ, but also wanting to remain so that he might be able to visit the church in Phillipi to encourage them in the LORD. He has even come to the conclusion that since his continued presence on this earth will serve the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, he’s certain he will not die in prison at this time. This is why I consider the first verse to be disjointed from this context. Could it be forced into this context? Possibly by hyper spiritualizing some of the words, but that’s doing a lot of manipulation of meaning by the listener not a natural flow of communication from the songwriter. Let’s close out the chapter and move on to the rest of the song.

27-30 Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

This encouragement is to the plural “you”, all the saints in Phillipi with their overseers and deacons. Is Paul saying each and every person will be put in jail? Not necessarily, but he is saying that the church body will suffer, and a body that is united in the Gospel of Jesus Christ will share in that suffering as one body, not a loose collection of individuals.

Verse 2. I really don’t like this verse at all. It seems to be dancing around the primary fruit of the Christian Life, repentance. How does God rip out pride from us by the roots? God the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin through the preaching of the Law. How does God wilt the seeds of greed? God the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin through the preaching of the Law. How do we tone down the sound of our transgressions? Believe in the Word of God, Repent, and Be forgiven in Jesus’ Name. Those who have been Redeemed by the Grace of God through Faith in Jesus Christ sing the song of the Redeemed. How does God speak to us? Through His Written Word, not through mysticism (silent prayer, visions, goosebumps, dreams, omens, divination, horoscopes, astrology, numerology, etc). Can God speak to us directly?  Yes. Is that where God promised to meet us (direct revelation)? No. He has promised to be found in His Word, so that is where we ought always to seek Him.

Verse 3 / Bridge. Now this verse/bridge seems properly tied to the Chorus and to our Philippians text. So, I like it. It’s still vague and open-ended, but in a useful way because there is no mysticism or vaulty hypothetical… it’s left open-ended a bit so that we who are in Christ can claim this Gospel mindset for ourselves. We, the Church, are exactly where God has placed us, and that as long as we live we have an opportunity to be partakers in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, through the preaching and enduring persecution for the sake of the Gospel.

Conclusion

If we can focus on the instruction of the Apostle Paul in Philippians 1, we can rightly enjoy the chorus and the bridge (or last verse) of this song. The other two verses are throw-away verses, really. So this song lands in the upper level of the middle-ground. Please remember that the final disposition of the song (Approved/Disapproved) is not the main focus of these DiM posts, the point is to go through the exercise of evaluating the lyric of what is being put forward as “Christian” music. We are looking for proclamation of Christ in all that bears the label “Christian”. When we find it, we rejoice. When we don’t, we lament.

2 Thessalonians 3:16 (ESV) Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.

In Christ Jesus,
Jorge

DiM | “Broken Vessels (Amazing Grace)” by Hillsong Worship

disapproveEvangelical Worship Edition.

August 25, 2016. So, it’s been a while since we last took a look at an Evangelical Worship song. Today we’re taking a look at “Broken Vessels (Amazing Grace)” from Hillsong Worship. I pulled this song from the “popular songs” list found at WorshipTogether.com, a website that pushes a majority of the “contemporary worship” music to music leaders around the world. They promote all things Passion, Hillsong, Jesus Culture (Bethel), and those who mimic their style. None of these “ministries” preach sound doctrine, yet countless churches around the globe are using their songs in their services.

The theology coming out of Hillsong isn’t a theology of the Cross (though the cross gets mentioned); rather, it is a theology of glory. They preach the christian and the christian life rather than Christ crucified for our sins. We’ll see that in today’s song. We’ll also see that Hillsong avoids sin, repentance, and forgiveness. Hillsong doesn’t preach original sin Biblically, instead they preach of our innate potential for greatness that is broken, until we give ourselves to God and then He’ll put us back together and set us on our destined path to greatness that will itself shine a light to the broken people of the world, so that they, in turn, might also do what we have done to become what we can become. Theology of Glory.

Official Lyric Video

Well, the video runs through the lyrics of the song in under 4min. However, it’s a 9:28min video. What’s going on for the remaining five and a half minutes? Emotional manipulation. The Hillsong doctrine of worship is to “invite the Presence of the spirit” through emotional ‘worship’. Music is powerful, and moves the flesh like nothing else on earth.

Lyrics (via WorshipTogether)

VERSE 1
All these pieces
Broken and scattered
In mercy gathered
Mended and whole
Empty handed
But not forsaken
I’ve been set free
I’ve been set free

PRE-CHORUS
Amazing grace
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost
But now I’m found
Was blind but now I see

CHORUS
Oh I can see You now
Oh I can see the love in Your eyes
Laying Yourself down
Raising up the broken to life

VERSE 2
You take our failure
You take our weakness
You set Your treasure
In jars of clay
So take this heart Lord
I’ll be your vessel
The world to see
Your life in me

Writer(s): Joel Houston, Jonas Myrin
CCLI #: 7019974

Discussion

Now, the song pulls from the hymn by John Newton called Amazing Grace. That song serves as a reminder of the Grace of God and the assurance of the Promise of the Resurrection in Christ Jesus, an eternity in the Kingdom of God. A reminder that God’s Grace is greater than our sin. The hymn doesn’t teach a lot of Scripture, it’s purpose is to remind the congregation of what they’ve already been taught concerning salvation and the forgiveness of sin. There are 6 verses to that song which bear out the theology. Our song today from Hillsong, only pulls the one verse and uses it as a pre-chorus. This verse of “Amazing Grace” doesn’t stand on its own. It really needs the other verses for clarity. Hillsong’s verses and chorus don’t add any clarity to the doctrine.

Verse 1. This verse is a mystically muddled mess. There is absolutely no clarity in these lines. Remember the point of Hillsong worship, it is to create mental imagery, to evoke a deeply felt emotion or sensation of feeling the Presence of the spirit… it isn’t clarity of thought or teaching they seek. The less they define, the less they have to explain and the more of the burden they can place on you. But knowing enough of Hillsong’s doctrine, we can attempt to fill in the thoughts they are aiming for. All these pieces Broken and scattered is Hillsong’s replacement for “born dead in trespasses and sins” in Eph 2.

Ephesians 2:1-3 (ESV) | By Grace Through Faith

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

Hillsong doesn’t preach sin and repentance. Instead, they want to be as inclusive as possible, so instead of referencing the Law of God through which the Holy Spirit works to convict the world of sin, Hillsong will used coded language of broken pieces scattered so that those who reject the concept of sin can still play along, because everyone can relate to brokenness, no faith required for that. No repentance, either. You see, when you can cloak sinfulness as something we are a victim of, then you cannot lovingly make a call to repent. Now, are we broken? Yes. We are fallen. We are born dead in sins, and we actively pursue sin. Once we’ve been granted saving Faith in Christ Jesus, our flesh is still broken, and actively works against the Spirit. So, yes, we are broken, but not as mere victims of some external force. That brokenness is in the seat of our passions, from our fleshly hearts flow sinful desires, lusts, passions, of which we are to repent and die to, daily, in Jesus’ Name. By Faith in Him.

In mercy gathered, Mended and whole. What’s missing? Forgiveness. You can’t speak of forgiveness when you avoid speaking of sin. What is the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Forgiveness. Jesus didn’t preach “wholeness and a victorious life”, He preached “Repent! for the Kingdom of God is at hand” (Matthew 4:12-17). What we desperately need is repentance and the forgiveness of sin. Another glaring issue with this language, is that without the objective Truth of God’s Word of forgiveness of sins in Christ Jesus, we are left looking for our own mendedness and wholeness for the assurance of salvation. How absolutely horrible to bind someone to a pursuit of fleshly perfection for the assurance of his/her salvation.  Horrible. So this circles back to the goal of Hillsong worship music, to make you feel warm and fuzzy on the inside so that you can connect that feeling with being in the Presence of god (The capitalization I’m employing is intentional. They are worshiping an idol of an emotional experience, not the God of the Bible).

Empty handed But not forsaken. This seems like an attempt to offer something in the way of touching on the concept that we have nothing to offer God for our own salvation, which is absolutely true, we have nothing to offer for our salvation, except the sin that we need forgiveness for and salvation from. This thought is confused in this song, since later the song talks of giving our hearts, and Hillsong Church is quick to bind the conscience of the believer to give financially to them… sacrificially for those who are empty-handed, to the empire of Hillsong. But I digress… for now, this line is filler in the verse to get to the chorus. I’ve been set free from what? brokenness. But what if I still feel broken? Am I free?

Pre-Chorus. General pre-Chorus pulled from a popular and beloved hymn. We’ve already addressed its use in this song in the first paragraph, so let’s move on to the chorus.

Chorus. This chorus is the main thrust of the song, both in the song portion and in the extra portion at the end. Oh I can see You now Oh I can see the love in Your eyes… and here is where we get to the Sarah Young “Jesus Calling” modern mystic portion of the song. No one in the band, or in the congregation, or in ear-shot of this emotional song is seeing Jesus, nor are they seeing love in His eyes. No one. They might be imagining, or “visualizing” it, but none of them are seeing it. This is mystical nonsense. What’s sad is this is the central focus of the majority of the song (5:30min)… just keep singing and emoting until you can drum up enough emotional goo so that you can claim to (or even believe) you can see Jesus and the Love in His eyes. If you want to see Jesus, look for Him in His Word. For Christ is the Word made flesh. He is currently in Heaven and has promised to be found in His Word, in the waters of Baptism (we are baptised into Christ), and in Communion (this is my body… this is my blood). Even if you refuse to confess His presence in Communion and in the waters of Baptism, you still have Christ in His Word. Christ hasn’t promised to meet you in your emotions. Please stop looking for Him there. Laying Yourself down Raising up the broken to life. If the rest of the theology in this song were sound, I’d be tempted to give this line a pass. Christ described His death and resurrection as lying down His life and taking it back up again (John 10). But there’s the vague language of “broken” rather than “dead in sin”. If the song elsewhere connected brokenness to sinfulness, this line would get a pass.

Verse 2. Again we see stand-ins for sin, namely “failures” and “weakness”. You set Your treasure in jars of clay. What treasure might that be? The Gospel of Jesus Christ is what it should be. We’ve been given the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the mystery of the Gospel is what we’ve been given. Is that where this song is headed? So take this heart Lord I’ll be your vessel The world to see Your life in me. Nope. Theology of glory. Rather than preach the Cross, the song aims for a glorious life of example that others will see and desire for themselves. So what happens when we don’t live up to this life? We are left to question whether or not we are truly saved, whether or not we are in Christ. There is no assurance here. Such bondage. Such a crushing weight to bear. This isn’t the Gospel, this is the Law… and it is crushing.

Ephesians 2:4-10 (ESV)

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Here is where we find the assurance of Salvation, in the Written Word of God. It is by Grace, through Faith in Christ Jesus. Not a result of works… no one may boast. Whether or not you feel it, is irrelevant.

Conclusion

If you’re aim in selecting song which proclaim the Gospel, or teach sound doctrine for the assurance of salvation in Christ Jesus, I don’t recommend this song. I don’t recommend this song for anything other than elevator music in the Mall… maybe in that environment folks will get Amazing Grace in their heads (hopefully they know 2 or 3 verses). As for Church worship, this song doesn’t point to Christ or His Word, it points us to ourselves, or to those around us who are clearly more spiritual than we are… at least they seem to be really feeling the Presence more than I am.  Preach the Word. Sing the Word. Repent and be forgiven of your sin in Jesus’ Name. In closing, let us look to Romans 10 to address the error in the final part of this song lyric, concerning the treasure of the Gospel.

Romans 10:11-17 (ESV)

For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For“everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

Amen. Share the Gospel and speak God’s Word for the world to hear.
In Christ Jesus,
Jorge