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This Is Amazing Grace
Amazing grace. King of glory. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain. A traditional Christian spiritual. The Old Testament. The New Testament. What do these three things have in common?
They are all lyrics in the Phil Wickham song "This is Amazing Grace." This young Christian artist has captured one of the great truths in the Bible: Jesus Christ, the King of glory, died on the cross to save all of us from the bonds of sin. In doing so, Jesus demonstrated to the world the unending mercy of God, a mercy so great that the source of all grace would die for us, none of whom are not worthy of his grace.
This song is written with a question and answer motif. In both of the two verses, the question of "who" arises:
Who breaks the power of sin and darkness with a love stronger than death? Who shakes the world and us to our very souls with his demonstration of love, mercy and grace? Reminiscent of the Old Testament, who can bring order out of chaos? And, as expounded by St. Paul and St. John, who makes us into sons and daughters of God? Who is the ruler of all?
Of course, there is only one answer to all of these questions. And that answer is Jesus Christ, King of kings and Lord of lords. The Father has put all things, even death, under the feet of Jesus. Only Jesus can affect these changes.
The lyrics of the chorus call us to reflect on the great sacrifice that Jesus made by dying on the cross. It took grace - infinite grace - to die on the cross for all of humankind. It was an unparalleled display of love. Only God is good and just, and, as written in the psalm, "Do not enter into judgment with your servant; before you no one can be just," Jesus still offered himself as a sacrifice for us. Recognition of the extent love should cause us to be overjoyed and, yes, even to sing about his love for us.
The bridge brings in a theme from Revelation: the Lamb that was slain conquered the grave. He brought salvation to the world. He did it out of love for us. So, yes, he is worthy to receive power, honor, glory and blessing.
Amazing grace. King of glory. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain. A traditional Christian spiritual. The Old Testament. The New Testament. Three phrases familiar to Christians across the world are combined in a way that elegantly ties them together. This conjoining of phrases reminds us of the single message of the Bible that God so loves us that he is unrelenting in his efforts to unite us with him.
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