Song for Today: Thursday, April 16, 2020

Christ the Lord is Risen Today by Charles Wesley, 1739.

Verse 1:

Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia! 
Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia! 
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia! 
Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia! 

Verse 2:

Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia! 
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia! 
Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia! 
Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia!

Observe: Our Easter celebrations continue with today’s classic hymn by Charles Wesley. Each verse focuses our attention on the Resurrection of Jesus.

In verse 1, the immediate result of the Resurrection is the all-inclusive praise “Alleluia” by “sons of men and angels.” Alleluia or, more properly, hallelujah comes from two Hebrew root words “halal” and “yaa,” which together mean “praise the Lord.” Christ arose from the grave, Alleluia. He fought the forces behind sin and won, Alleluia. Death tried to keep him, but could not, and paradise is opened for us. Alleluia!

Verse 3 tells us that as he lives, we live. Wesley paraphrases Paul, who, in First Corinthians 15, quotes Isaiah and Hosea, “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 15:55–57, ESV).

Thanks be to the Father who gives us the victory Jesus has won as a gift of his grace. His gift of righteousness by grace is the gospel, which leads us to the response described in verse 4.

Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia! 
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia! 
Made like him, like him we rise, Alleluia! 
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia! 

Hallelujah is the operative word of praise in eternity. The Apostle John writes, I heard the loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying out, “Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God. Once more they cried out, “Hallelujah!” The twenty-four elders and the four living creatures worshiped God who was seated on the throne, saying, “Amen. Hallelujah!” Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory.” (Revelation 19:1, 3, 4, 6).

John heard and saw the proof that God’s promises are “yes and amen” for us in Jesus Christ.

Verse 6:

King of glory, soul of bliss, Alleluia! 
Everlasting life is this, Alleluia! 
Thee to know, thy power to prove, Alleluia! 
Thus to sing, and thus to love, Alleluia! 

Blessings, Pastor Don.


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