Immortal Invisible God Only Wise by Walter C. Smith, 1867.
Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
in light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
almighty, victorious, thy great name we praise.
Observe: God is clothed in light. The Psalmist writes, O Lord my God, you are very great! You are clothed with splendor and majesty, covering yourself with light as with a garment, stretching out the heavens like a tent.” (Psalm 104:1b–2, ESV). Moses prays, Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. (Psalm 90:2) Daniel describes what he sees in a vision. As I looked, thrones were placed, and the Ancient of Days took his seat; his clothing was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool; his throne was fiery flames; its wheels were burning fire. (Daniel 7:9).
The Ancient of Days is sovereign over all creation and his great name we praise.
Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
nor wanting, nor wasting, thou rulest in might;
thy justice like mountains high soaring above
thy clouds which are fountains of goodness and love.
Although silent as light, God has spoken through his Son. Jesus reveals the Father’s justice, power, self-sufficiency, goodness, and love. Only he has seen the Father. Jesus says, not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.” (John 6:46–47). The Father sent his Son to reconcile sinners to the perfect God that only Jesus has seen. All who believe Jesus are accepted by the unseen, eternal Father.
Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
thine angels adore thee, all veiling their sight;
all praise we would render; O help us to see
‘tis only the splendor of light hideth thee!
Smith’s hymn is about God the Father. His grace gives life to spiritually dead human beings who, through the redemption won by the Son, are credited with perfect righteousness by the gift of faith through the Spirit. The Son reveals the Father. Paul writes, For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6), and the Spirit reveals the Father and Son (John 16:13).
The purpose of redemption is to complete God’s plan to unify the spiritual and physical. Then, God will be present with his people, angels, and imagers together, for his eternal praise. Until then, we praise him in spirit and truth wherever we are.
Whether sheltering in place or back into ‘normal’ life, one thing is sure. “All praise we would render because the Spirit has enabled us to see.” Praise him throughout your day.
Blessings, Pastor Don.