Friday, May 27, 2011

God Laid the Earth's Foundation

This text was written for First Lutheran Church in Boston and will be sung this coming Sunday in their worship service.  Set to the strong tune MOVILLE, the text expands upon the thought of the final stanza, "Sing to the LORD a new song..." (Ps. 96:1-3)  The response to God's great works throughout Scripture has been a new song, declaring all that our triune God has done.  Of course His greatest work accomplished was that which was completed through His only Son, the eternal Word made flesh, who came fulfilling all that was foreshadowed in the Old Testament.

1.  God laid the earth's foundation;
     He placed its cornerstone.
     Do you have understanding
     Of such great knowledge shown?
     God set the bounds for water,
     Devised how clouds would hang,
     While morning stars of heaven
     For joy together sang!

2.  Proud Pharaoh's raging army
     Lay drowned beneath the sea;
     Great Moses and all Israel
     Praised God triumphantly.
     Then Miriam and the women,
     With tambourines raised high,
     All danced in joyful tribute
     Beneath the desert sky.

3.  God sent a greater Moses
     To free our captive race:
     Pure from the womb of Mary,
     Enfleshed as truth and grace.
     "To God on high be glory
      And peace to all the earth!"
     Thus sang the heaven-sent angels
     The night of Jesus' birth.

4.  Joshua fought and conquered,
     When he to Canaan came.
     God's Son, incarnate Savior,
     Fought fierce our rest to claim:
     No seven-fold blast of trumpets,
     No shout tore evil down,
     For Jesus chose as weapons
     A cross and thorny crown.

5.  Ark of God's holy presence,
     Before whom angels fall--
     How could the Lord of heaven
     Face scorn and spit and gall?
     Yet this High Priest most holy,
     Behind the veil went in;
     His own pure blood there sprinkled
     To cover human sin.

6.  Christ cried out, "It is finished!"
     And with His final breath,
     Committed to the Father
     His spirit at His death.
     Dark, rumbled dazed creation:
     "God died?  How can this be?"
     While foul, demonic minions
     Squealed loud cacophony.

7.  Sealed in the tomb, Christ rested--
     One final Sabbath day!
     Fulfilled the prophet's promise:
     "He shall not see decay."
     Our Lord to hell descended,
     Declaring victory,
     Then rising led hosts vanquished
     In full captivity!

8.  For forty days appearing
     To His own chosen band,
     Then Christ to heav'n ascended
     To rule at God's right hand.
     Soon to the ones He promised,
     The Holy Spirit came;
     With tongues they spoke God's wisdom
     'Mid rushing wind and flame.

9.  God laid a new foundation
     With Christ as Cornerstone;
     On prophets and apostles
     Through whom the Christ was known:
     One body and one Spirit,
     One Lord--one God of all,
     One faith that rests securely
     On one baptismal call!

10.  Sing to the LORD a new song!
       Applaud His selfless fame;
       Declare among the nations
       The glory due His name!
       Now roar, O seas, His power!
       Now wave, O fields, His worth!
       With righteousness and justice,
       He comes to judge the earth!