Friday, June 21, 2013

In Immanuel's Land

I've been listening through Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology lectures and recently was exposed to a hymn that has deeply impacted me. Wayne mentioned it in one of his lectures, so I looked it up and have read it many times every day since then. It's called "The Sands of Time Are Sinking," by Anne Ross Cousin.

This hymn is nothing like modern music, which I think is a shame. Anne knew something that we're missing today. If you read the lyrics you'll see that she was deeply moved by her future inheritance and eternal existence in Heaven. But she wasn't concerned with what she would be doing there, how it would feel, the bad that was finally gone - although all of these are elements of Heaven. Anne knew her Bible, because what she was focused on what God Himself. She knew that He is Heaven - being with Him forever is what makes that future glorious.

I've done a bit of studying about Heaven and think of it often. I try to maintain an eternal perspective, with that day clear in my vision as I live this life. This song comes as close to painting that vivid picture as any other I've ever heard ("Jesus Paid It All" and "Before The Throne of God Above" are also up there on my list). Take some time to read these lyrics and let Jesus be the only desire you have in Heaven.

The sands of time are sinking,
The dawn of Heaven breaks;
The summer morn I’ve sighed for-
The fair, sweet morn awakes:
Dark, dark had been the midnight
But dayspring is at hand,
And glory, glory dwelleth
In Immanuel’s land.

O Christ, He is the fountain,
The deep, sweet well of love!
The streams on earth I’ve tasted
More deep I’ll drink above:
There to an ocean fullness
His mercy doth expand,
And glory, glory dwelleth
In Immanuel’s land.

The king there in His beauty,
Without a veil is seen:
It were a well-spent journey,
Though seven deaths lay between:
The Lamb with His fair army,
Doth on Mount Zion stand,
And glory, glory dwelleth
In Immanuel’s land.

O I am my Beloved’s
And my Beloved is mine!
He brings a poor, vile sinner
Into His house of wine.
I stand upon His merit-
I know no other stand,
Not e’en where glory dwelleth
In Immanuel’s land.

The bride eyes not her garment,
But her dear Bridegroom’s face;
I will not gaze at glory
But on my King of grace.
Not at the crown He giveth
But on His pierced hand;
The Lamb is all the glory
Of Immanuel’s land.

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