Wednesday, September 21, 2022

347. Easter 6 Hymn (Series A)

The texts this time are Acts 17:16-31, 1 Peter 3:13-22 and John 14:15-21. The Gospel lesson gives me the excuse I've been waiting for, all these many years, to supply what is lacking to the Bill Gaither song "Because He lives," which I've always heard as failing to get to the point Jesus made so succinctly in John 14:19. I tried and tried to find another "used once and never again in the history of anglophone Lutheranism" hymn tune to fit the hymn I had in mind, but I fell back on one that's had a bit more airplay – HERR CHRIST, DER EINIG GOTTS SOHN, which I've seen paired once each with "Now hail we our Redeemer" (The Concordia Hymnal) and "Thou biddest us, O Savior" (Australia's Lutheran Hymnal), and in multiple books with "When o'er my sins I sorrow" and "The only Son from heaven." It's one of those pieces that my beloved The Lutheran Hymnal sadly overlooked, but more recent Missouri Synod hymnbooks have been catching on. So, you might actually know it already.

"Because I live," said Jesus,
"You too, My child, will live;
And I will, with the Father,
Another Helper give.
I will not leave you friendless,
For lo, My love is endless
And in your midst will thrive."

"The Paraclete," said Jesus,
"Will always be with you.
Of truth He is the Spirit,
Which this world never knew;
Though it does not believe Him,
You know Him and receive Him,
Indwelling through and through.

"Since I am in the Father,
You in me, I in you,
He who has My commandments
In love the same will do;
And I will love Him dearly,
Myself disclosing clearly."
Amen, the word is true!

This knowing, brothers, sisters,
Serve Christ with gentle zeal;
Bear slander with a conscience
Cleansed by baptism's appeal.
Since He is resurrected,
At God's right hand perfected,
Our fellowship is real.

If sin He drowns and carries
From us so far away,
Still more from death He frees us
From now until that Day
When, in our own flesh standing,
Beneath His banner banding,
Full homage we will pay.

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