Sunday, April 8, 2012

What a Glorious Day!

Today we celebrate Jesus' victory over sin and death, a victory that His Church shares because of our union with Him. We can celebrate what Hosea prophesied, "[Christ] will ransom them from the power of the grave; [Christ] will redeem them from death. Where, O death, are your plagues? Where, O grave, is your destruction?" Hosea 13:14

In The Valley of Vision (a collection of Puritan prayers) there are a few prayers that I would like to share that express well what we celebrate on this day.

Love lustres at Calvary (pg. 76)
My Father,
   Enlarge my heart, warm my affections,
   open my lips,
   supply words that proclaim ‘Love lustres
      at Calvary.’
There grace removes my burdens and heaps them
      on thy Son,
   made a transgressor, a curse, and sin for me;
There the sword of Thy justice smote the man,
      Thy fellow;
There Thy infinite attributes were magnified,
   and infinite atonement was made;
There infinite punishment was due,
   and infinite punishment was endured.
Christ was all anguish that I might be all joy,
   cast off that I might be brought in,
   trodden down as an enemy
      that I might be welcomed as a friend,
   surrendered to hell’s worst
      that I might attain heaven’s best,
   stripped that I might be clothed,
   wounded that I might be healed,
   athirst that I might drink,
   tormented that I might be comforted,
   made a shame that I might inherit glory,
   entered darkness that I might have eternal light.
My Savior wept that all tears might be wiped
      from my eyes,
   groaned that I might have endless song,
   endured all pain that I might have unfading health,
   bore a thorny crown that I might have
      a glory-diadem,
   bowed His head that I might uplift mine,
   experienced reproach that I might receive
   closed His eyes in death that I might gaze
      on unclouded brightness,
   expired that I might for ever live.
O Father, who spared not Thine only Son that Thou
      mightest spare me,
All this transfer Thy love designed and
Help me to adore Thee by lips and life.
O that my every breath might be ecstatic praise,
   my every step buoyant with delight, as I see my
      enemies crushed,
   satan baffled, defeated, destroyed,
   sin buried in the ocean of reconciling blood,
   hell’s gates closed, heaven’s portal open.
Go forth, O conquering God, and show me
   the cross, mighty to subdue, comfort and save.

Resurrection (pg. 86)
Great was the joy of Israel's sons,
   when Egypt died upon the shore,
   Far greater joy
   when the Redeemer's foe lay crushed
   in the dust.
Jesus strides forth as the Victor,
   conqueror of death, hell, and all opposing
He bursts the bands of death,
   tramples the powers of darkness down,
   and lives for ever.
He, my gracious surety,
   apprehended for payment of my debt,
   comes forth from the prison house of the grave
   free, and triumphant over sin, satan, and death.
Show me herein the proof that His vicarious offering is accepted,
   that the claims of justice are satisfied,
   that the devil's scepter is shivered,
   that his wrongful throne is leveled.
Give me the assurance that in Christ I died,
   in Him I rose,
   in His life I live, in His victory I triumph,
   in His ascension I shall be glorified.
Adorable Redeemer,
   Thou who wast lifted up upon a cross
   art ascended to the highest heaven.
Thou, who as Man of sorrows
   wast crowned with thorns,
   art now as Lord of life wreathed with glory.
Once, no shame more deep than Thing,
   no agony more bitter,
   no death more cruel.
Now, no exaltation more high,
   no life more glorious,
   no advocate more effective.
Thou art in the triumph car leading the captive
   Thine enemies behind Thee.
What more could be done than Thou has done!
   Thy death is my life,
   Thy resurrection my peace,
   Thy ascension my hope,
   Thy prayers my comfort.

May these words from saints of old bless your heart on this glorious day. May we all remember that His death is our life and His resurrection our peace.

By His Grace,

No comments: