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Monday, October 11, 2010

How Sweet the Sound

God be gracious to us and bless us, And cause His face to shine upon us- [Selah. That thy way may be known on the earth, Thy salvation among all nations. Psalms 67:1,2

The song Amazing Grace has lost some of its luster for me over the years. I’ve been disappointed for a long time with how this beautiful hymn has become a canned “standard” for the world that is played in movies, the media and at various worldly gatherings. It feels to me as if it has become a “feel good” salve for the secular conscience. It's an attempt at piety in which people try to meet with the Living God without having to be in the same room with Him. This kind of use of the hymn has many times soured me on hearing it but the message remains as strong and vibrant as when it was first penned by John Newton in 1779.

The grace and life changing power of Jesus Christ is still a tremendous catalyst for change over the years. Many skeptics and even those hostile to the gospel have been radically changed for the better upon truthfully coming face-to-face with its message. People like the English journalist Frank Morrison, the agnostic C. S. Lewis, New York gang leader Nicky Cruz, former White House aide Chuck Colson, author Eugenia Price, and former U.S. senator Mark Hatfield to name a few. Many continue to come out of the nations; Zaire, Japan, Hong Kong, Czechoslovakia, Russia, Canada, Vietnam and every other realm on earth. Surely every nation, ethnic group and language contains a remnant that loves and praises the bringer of that grace.

Even if the message of grace has been watered down by the world the power of it has never diminished. In a world of 7 billion humans there are conceivably hundreds of thousands every single day who hear the message of amazing grace and believe in the Chosen One who brought it. That is an encouragement to those of us who believe and a blessed hope to those yet to discover how amazing God’s grace really is. It is a daily blessing that is also an eternal hope. The Church of God continues and the gates of hell are not prevailing against it. All praise to God.