“Blest Be the Lamb” by Sojourn

Sojourn Community Church is a nondenominational multicampus church in Kentucky that has a thriving music ministry. Out of it has come nine albums, which can be purchased on the church’s music site, or wherever tunes are sold. Here’s just one of many tracks of theirs that engage the Jesus question. Its answer? The Lamb of God, who was slain for us—a metaphor with roots growing all the way back to the Hebrew scriptures.

Grunewald's Crucifixion (Lamb of God)

Matthias Grünewald, Crucifixion (detail), from the Isenheim Altarpiece, 1512-16.

LYRICS:

When I can read my title clear
To mansions beyond this life,
I’ll bid farewell to every fear
And wipe my weeping eyes.

Then I will bathe my weary soul
In seas of heav’nly rest,
And not a wave of trouble will roll
Across my peaceful breast.

Blest be the Lamb, my dearest Lord,
Who bought me with his blood
And quenched his Father’s flaming sword
In his own vital flood.

Should earth a war against me wage
And hellish darts be hurled,
Then I can laugh at Satan’s rage
And face a frowning world.

The Lamb, he freed my captive soul
From Satan’s heavy chains
And sent the lion down to howl
Where hell and horror reign.

Let cares like a deluge come
And storms of sorrow fall.
May I but safely reach my home,
My God, my heav’n, my all!

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T-shirt: Forgiveness and redemption–offer expires when you do

This offer expires when you doFound at divinecotton.com.

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Roundup: Eden in art, transgender children, public schooling, new Exodus movie, and John Williams parody

“Back to Eden: Contemporary Artists Wander the Garden”: This new exhibition at the Museum of Biblical Art in Manhattan is on view through September 28. It features eighteen artists, many of whom work in nontraditional media.

Expulsion from the Garden (Adam and Eve)

Fred Tomaselli, Study for Expulsion, 2000. Leaves, pills, acrylic, photocollage, and resin on wood panel, 24 x 30 in. © The Artist / Courtesy of James Cohan Gallery, New York/Shanghai.

“I Am Ryland: The Story of a Male-Identifying Little Girl Who Didn’t Transition” by Lindsay Leigh Bentley: In response to the viral video “Ryland’s Story,” one woman shares her own experience of growing up as a girl who desperately wanted to be a boy—and warns parents against forcing their children to conform to gender stereotypes. Gender identity is a complex issue, but here is just one story, one perspective, to be thrown into the mix.

“10 Lessons from 10 Years of Public Schooling” by Tim Challies: As a kid I experienced quite a bit of prejudice in my church because I attended a public school; it made church members assume things about me, my parents, and my teachers that simply were not true. Here are a few observations and bits of advice from a Christian blogger who is very conservative but who has opted to send his kids to public school—and hasn’t been disappointed.

The trailer for Exodus: Gods and Kings was released last week. Directed by Ridley Scott and starring Christian Bale as Moses, the movie will be in theaters starting in December.

 

And lastly, the story of Jesus set to the tune of a medley of Steven Spielberg movie theme songs (that were composed by John Williams). Very much in the vein of the Christian band ApologetiX!

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Tee Time: Christ with Kitties

Cats and JesusFound at etsy.com.

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There is no such thing as atheism

Last week I posted a sermon by Mark Driscoll in which he discusses the meaning and universality of worship. We are worshipping beings, he said; whether “religious” or not, it is our natural impulse to vest ultimate meaning in some object, be it a person or a thing, orient ourselves around it, make sacrifices for it, and define our identity by it.

Harold Best, Dean Emeritus of Wheaton College Conservatory of Music, wrote in Unceasing Worship: Biblical Perspectives on Worship and the Arts,

At this very moment, and for as long as this world endures, everybody inhabiting it is bowing down and serving something or someone—an artifact, a person, an institution, an idea, a spirit, or God through Christ. Everyone is being shaped thereby and is growing up toward some measure of fullness, whether of righteousness or of evil. No one is exempt and no one can wish to be. We are, every one of us, unceasing worshipers and will remain so forever, for eternity is an infinite extrapolation of one of two conditions: a surrender to the sinfulness of sin unto infinite loss or the commitment of personal righteousness unto infinite gain. This is the central fact of our existence, and it drives every other fact. Within it lies the story of creation, fall, redemption, and new creation or final loss. (pp. 17-18)

Christians are taught to be aware of the various forms of idolatry that exist in today’s postmodern culture and to point out that “everybody worships.” But when this truism comes from the lips of a popular, award-winning novelist who lacks a Christian bias, it rings all the more loudly.

On May 21, 2005, David Foster Wallace delivered a commencement address at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, and hit upon a lot of the same points as Driscoll and Best. He challenged Kenyon’s graduating class to consider what it is they give supreme value to in their lives, and then how that object of worship has treated them.   Continue reading

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Tee Time: Dumbest way to die . . .

Don't die without JesusWithout Jesus!

Found at divinecotton.com.

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Vintage Jesus, Part 7: Why Should We Worship Jesus?

This twelve-part series outlines the “Vintage Jesus” sermons of Pastor Mark Driscoll. See part 1 here.

3:00: American football and Hindu idol worship—not so different from each other

8:57: Broad picture of worship

  • What one culture considers just a hobby, entertainment, or recreational activity another culture might recognize as a worship event.
  • Popular American idols include sports teams, video games, televisions, cars, bands, sex, and fashion. Or more elusive ones like beauty, popularity, success, financial security, romantic love, education, and so on.

9:33: Four things worship is not

  1. Worship is not exclusively religious.
  2. Worship is not a style of music.
  3. Worship is not something that starts and stops. (It’s ongoing; it’s a lifestyle.)
  4. Worship is not tied to a time or a place. (As John 4 tells us, it’s a question not of when or where, but of who or what.)

12:23: Worship defined (Romans 11:36-12:1): whatever you hold in a position of glory  Continue reading

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