Sunday, October 9, 2022

374. Proper 25 (Series A)

Oh, are we getting close to the end of the first lap in this 3-year-lectionary hymn marathon! So close that I can now, literally, count on my fingers the number of hymns needing to be written for Series A (including this one). Lessons for the Sunday between Oct. 23 and 29 are Leviticus 19:1-2, skip and 15-18; 1 Thessalonians 2:1-13; and Matthew 22:34-46. The tune is ST. AMBROSE by William H. Monk (†1889), which the Ev. Lutheran Hymn-Book pairs with "Shepherd of tender youth." Not to be confused with another ST. AMBROSE, an "ancient melody" also used in ELHB and arranged by W.H. Monk to boot. In case anyone asks. And finally, I know some of you don't like it when a hymn ends with a question-mark, but sometimes, what can you do? (wink)

Men set the Lord a quiz.
Asked which commandment is
The first, He said:
"The Lord love with your whole
Mind, spirit, heart and soul;
Let love of neighbor rule
In self-love's stead."

Then asked the Holy One:
"Of whom is Christ the Son?
If David, why
Does David call Him Lord?"
Thereafter no one dared
Demand of Him a word,
His pow'r defy.

Yet note this lesson well:
The agencies of hell
Rely on pow'r.
But God's Son it behove
To visit from above,
Armed but with perfect love
At direst hour.

The reason for His plan—
His love of God and man—
He served with blood.
Now is His goal fulfilled:
Death and the grave are killed,
Sin's accusations stilled,
Nailed to the rood.

God's mercy so abounds,
Can there by any grounds
To doubt His word?
What better can engage
Our love, till end of age,
Than making our life's gauge
"Thus says the Lord"?

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