"Parables of Christ"
many of the scriptural metaphors for Christ, turning each one into a personal
gesture of meditation and worship. Try reading it out loud - without hurrying.
PARABLES OF CHRIST
Go, worship at Immanuel's feet;
See, in His face what wonders meet;
Earth is too narrow to express
His worth, His glory, or His grace!
The whole creation can afford
But some faint shadow of my Lord;
Nature, to make His beauties known,
Must mingle colours not her own.
Is he compared to wine or bread?
Dear Lord, our souls would thus be fed;
That flesh, that dying blood of Thine,
Is Bread of Life is heavenly wine.
Is He a tree? The world receives
Salvation from His healing leaves;
That righteous Branch, that fruitful bough
Is David's root and offspring too.
Is He a rose? Not Sharon yields
Such fragrancy in all her fields;
Or if the lily he assume,
The valleys bless the rich perfume.
Is he a vine? His heavenly root
Supplies the boughs with life and fruit:
O let a lasting union join
My soul the branch to Christ the Vine.
Is He the head? Each member lives
And owns the vital power He gives;
The saints below and saints above
Joined by His Spirit and His love.
Is He a fountain? There I bathe,
And heal the plague of sin and death;
These waters all my soul renew,
And cleanse my spotted garments too.
Is he a fire? He'll purge my dross;
But the true gold sustains no loss:
Like a refiner shall He sit
And tread the refuse with His feet.
Is He a rock? How firm He proves!
The Rock of Ages never moves:
Yet the sweet streams that from Him flow
Attend us all the desert through.
Is He a Way? He leads to God;
The path is drawn in lines of blood;
There would I walk with hope and zeal
Till I arrive at Zion's hill.
Is He a door? I'll enter in;
Behold the pastures large and green!
A paradise divinely fair;
None but the sheep have freedom there.
Is He designed a corner-stone,
For men to build their heaven upon?
I'll make Him my foundation too,
Nor fear the plots of hell below.
Is He a temple? I adore
The indwelling majesty and power;
And still to His most holy place,
Whene'er I pray, I turn my face.
Is He a star? He breaks the night,
Piercing the shade with dawning light;
I know His glories from afar,
I know the bright, the morning Star!
Is He a sun? His beams are grace,
His course is joy and righteousness:
nations rejoice when He appears
To chase their clouds and dry their tears.
Oh! let me climb those higher skies
Where storms and darkness never rise!
There He displays His powers abroad,
And shines and reigns, th' incarnate God.
Not earth, nor seas, nor sun, nor stars,
Nor heaven His full resemblance bears:
His beauties we can never trace
Till we behold Him face to face.
- Isaac Watts (1674-1748), from A TREASURY OF CHRISTIAN VERSE, selected and
edited by Hugh Martin, SCM Press Ltd., 1959.
[And Isaac Watts is right: words cannot fully express Christ's majesty and
splendor, his mercy and love. Wow!]
WORSHIP QUOTE QUIZ
OK, here's another WORSHIP QUOTE quiz. Without looking in your handy hymnal,
which one of the following great hymn texts was NOT written by Isaac Watts?
* Jesus, Lover of my soul
* Jesus shall reign where e'er the sun
* Joy to the world! the Lord is come
* O God, our help in ages past
* When I survey the wondrous cross
Have a great week,
Pastor of Worship and Music
Chapel Hill Bible Church
Chapel Hill, North Carolina