What are we Singing: Let it Rise
- Saturday, May 30, 2009
From glory to glory, the Word says. Let it rise!
In the song, Let it Rise, certain attributes are heralded to the Lord while others are sung to the King. Let the praises of the King… it says and I am reminded of two incidences in the Bible. The first, when David, the soon to be king of Israel, was praised for having slain his “tens of thousands.” (See 1 samuel 18:7)
My second thought is of Jesus, entering Jerusalem, the Passover Lamb to the slaughter – though the people did not know it yet. Those who were there for the Passover feast, those who had followed him, adored him, had been healed and amazed by him, shouted their hallelujahs.
I am them, I think. They are me. I have followed, adored, been healed and amazed by Jesus. He is the King of my heart, my life, my all. There is nothing in my life which I have not knowingly held from his Lordship and Kingship. He deserves every word, every note of praise I can possibly shout or sing.
Or whisper in the silences he creates by his awesome presence. Let it rise …
2 Chronicles 30:26 says: So there was great joy in Jerusalem: for since the time of Solomon the son of David king of Israel there was not the like in Jerusalem.
There had been David. There had been Solomon, his son. And now, there was Hezekiah, King of Judah, who had sent word to all Israel, Judah, Ephraim and Manasseh; an invitation to come to the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem in order to celebrate the Passover.
It had been too long coming, the reinstatement of this most holy event. This time of worship and praise to the Lord and God of Israel. The couriers cried out, “People of Israel, return…” (2 chronicles 30:6b).
And why was there such joy? Such euphoria? Because “The priests and the Levites stood to bless the people, and God heard them, for their prayer reached heaven, his holy dwelling place” (30: 27).
God heard them … their prayers had reached heaven … his holy dwelling place. Let it rise!
Throughout the Old Testament we read of freedom and captivity – from Egypt to Babylon, from Persia to Assyria. In the New Testament we read of Pax Romana, the Peace of Rome.
Roman rule cannot pour out freedom.
The people waited for a Messiah, one who would set them free from those who had held them captive for entirely too long. The only problem was … it was their own sin, the refusal to make God their all in all … their dance within the world and its trappings … which led to both their spiritual and physical captivity.
And then a rabbi came from Nazareth declaring, “You shall know the truth … and the truth shall set you free” (john 8:32). You, no doubt, have heard those words before. But what comes after them?
They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”
Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin …”
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