Sunday, July 5, 2015

120. Elijah Hymn

Today's Old Testament lesson at church, together with my happy experience writing a "Daniel Hymn" a few years ago, prompted me to try this experiment in condensing a biblical character's story into a handful (or two) of hymn stanzas. I don't have a tune in mind as yet, so stand by for updates!
Living God, whose straying fold
Warning by Elijah heard
That the heavens would withhold
Rain and dew but by Your word:
Shield us from such dreadful wrath!
Hold our footsteps on Your path!
So refresh our fainting spirit
As Elijah by brook Cherith!

Lord, who bent Elijah's path
To no house in Israel,
But gave her of Zarephath
Life-preserving flour and oil:
So take pity on our need,
Caring not for name or deed!
Let us also now be given
Never-failing Bread from heaven!

God, who raised the widow's son
Through Elijah's threefold prayer:
Let the same for us be done
In the hour of grief and care!
Having laid us on our bed,
Raise us also from the dead!
Never of Your word deprive us
Till in glory You revive us!

Lord, whose prophet showed good faith
When he, Ahab summoning,
Spared a righteous man from death
And his tryst kept with the king:
Let Your presence, too, be bound
Where You've sworn it will be found,
Where Your living name is spoken
And life-giving Bread is broken.

God, whose prophet answered well
When King Ahab dared to ask,
"Do you trouble Israel?" -
Nerve us too for such a task!
Show by lives refashioned where
Your flame dwells, and kindle prayer,
That their wiles and woes may double
Back on them who cause us trouble!

Lord, whose prophet's feet outstripped
Chariot wheels down Carmel's slope;
Who when fear Elijah gripped
Gave him shelter, rest and hope:
Let Your messenger now come
Feed us for our journey home!
Speed our steps until we meet You,
Running joyfully to greet You!

God, whose prophet chid the king
Till from sin he turned aside:
Spare us not Law's bitter sting
Lest we perish in our pride!
Christ, Your blood-bought word of grace
Give like pow'r, that we may face
Life and death with faith unfailing,
Over ev'ry foe prevailing!

Let us run and not give o'er
Till our race is fully run;
Help us trust Your gospel's pow'r
Through Your dearly given Son!
Not in earthquake, storm or fire
Do You dwell with terror dire,
But in words of consolation
You preserve a remnant nation.

Even when we seem to stand
On the razor-edge of doom,
Yet, Elijah's Lord, Your hand
Guides the faithful through the gloom.
Neither chariot's flaming team
Nor the whirlwind's direful scream
Sweeps aside this comfort ample
From Elijah's blest example.

With Elijah we rejoice
In the Father and the Son
And the Spirit's gentle voice
Ever, altogether One.
Be with us as in the days
When Elijah led Your praise,
Living Lord, that none may sever
Us from Your elect forever!

UPDATE: Here's an original tune for this monster. Its title is ELIJAH.

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