Monday, January 10, 2011

Convo with Pastor - Job 19:25-26

I know that my Redeemer lives,
and that in the end he will stand upon the earth.
And after my skin has been destroyed,
yet in my flesh I will see God ...
Job 19:25-26
Congregations have favorite songs. For various reasons, particular tunes and lyrics become congregational anthems. Therefore, in my first ten years of ministry and across my first fifty burials, the most familiar funeral anthem of one congregation proclaimed a mixture of Old Testament Job and New Testament hope:   
I know that my Redeemer lives.
What comfort this sweet sentence gives.
Standing on the Easter side of the cross and the empty tomb, Christians join with every eye-witness to the resurrection in proclaiming with that our redeemer truly lives.  
But Job's confidence is even more astounding. The only empty tomb Job experienced was the yawning grave that swallowed his whole family. Job didn't know Jesus' resurrection, he only knew earthly death ... and pain ... and grief. On top of that, his body was swallowed in boils and sores and pain and misery.
"I know that my redeemer lives" was faith. Pure faith. Powerful faith!
And how about us? Even after powerful testimonies of the resurrection, we still have nagging corners of uncertainty like Doubting Thomas. Therefore, in the midst of one of the longer and more unsettling books of scripture -- like Job -- pause long enough to remember that Job didn't have eye-witness testimonies or a resurrected promise. All he had was pain, turmoil, and a faith that flickered but couldn't be extinguished.
He could see no hope ... and yet he still hoped. 
In Christ's Love,
a guy who wants to
change his name to Hope
I am not familiar with the song Pastor talked about, but when I read the verse, a different song popped into my head.
Nicole C. Mullin

Who taught the sun where to stand in the morning
Who told the ocean you an only come this far?
Who showed the moon where to hide 'til evening
Whose words alone can catch a falling star?

Well I know my Redeemer lives
I know my Redeemer lives
All of creation testify
This life within me cries
I know my Redeemer lives

The very same God that spins things in orbit
He runs to the weary, the worn and the weak
And the same gentle hands that hold me when I'm broken
They conquered death to bring me victory

Now I know my Redeemer lives
I know my Redemer lives
Let all creation testify
Let this life wihtin me cry
I know my Redeemer, He lives

To take away my shame
And He lives forever I'll proclaim
That the payment for my sin
Was the precious life He gave
But now He's alive
And there's an empty grave.

And I know my Redeemer, He lives
I know my Redeemer lives
Let all creation testify
This life within me cries
I know my Redeemer lives

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Speak gently. carefully. thoughtfully. graciously. humbly.

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