Now Sleeps that Sword for Me

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By Mike Riccardi

Resurrection of Christ

“He is not here, for he has risen, as he said.” Matthew 28:6 Photo credit: Waiting for the Word

Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve found that around Easter time it’s very easy for our thoughts to be occupied with the events of Resurrection Sunday—sometimes even to the exclusion of the events of Good Friday. That may be for a number of reasons. Perhaps it’s because the church’s time together on Good Friday is usually an abbreviated service at the end of a busy workday, while Resurrection Sunday is a special holiday spent with family. Perhaps it’s simply because it’s more pleasant and encouraging to meditate on the triumph and the victory of Christ’s resurrection than the injustice, suffering, and agony of His death.

But truly, you can’t have Easter Sunday without Good Friday. You can’t have the resurrection of Christ without the atonement of Christ. Each is vitally essential to the Gospel. And of all days, Good Friday is a day to give ourselves to the contemplation of and reflection upon the nature of Christ’s atonement on our behalf. Something that has stirred me to worship, supplemental to Scripture’s accounts of and commentary on the atonement, is a 19th-century hymn called “O Christ! What Burdens Bowed Thy Head.” It may be the best non-inspired worship song that I know of that captures the depth of the theology of penal substitutionary atonement. And it not only purveys the soundest of theology, but it’s also one of the most beautiful pieces of poetry I’ve ever read. Consider the words of these six verses, Christian, and worship the Lamb who has borne the wrath of God in your place.

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O Christ! What burdens bowed Thy head!
Our load was laid on Thee;
Thou stoodest in the sinner’s stead,
Didst bear all ill for me.
A Victim led, Thy blood was shed;
Now there’s no load for me.

Death and the curse were in our cup:
O Christ, ’twas full for Thee;
But Thou hast drained the last dark drop,
‘Tis empty now for me!
That bitter cup, love drank it up;
Now blessing’s draught for me!

Jehovah lifted up His rod;
O Christ, it fell on Thee!
Thou wast sore stricken of Thy God;
There’s not one stroke for me.
Thy tears, Thy blood, beneath it flowed;
Thy bruising healeth me.

The tempest’s awful voice was heard,
O Christ, it broke on Thee!
Thy open bosom was my ward,
It braved the storm for me.
Thy form was scarred, Thy visage marred;
Now cloudless peace for me.

Jehovah bade His sword awake;
O Christ, it woke ‘gainst Thee!
Thy blood the flaming blade must slake;
Thine heart its sheath must be;
All for my sake, my peace to make;
Now sleeps that sword for me.

For me, Lord Jesus, Thou hast died,
And I have died in Thee!
Thou’rt ris’n—my hands are all untied,
And now Thou liv’st in me.
When purified, made white and tried,
Thy glory then for me!

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One Response to Now Sleeps that Sword for Me

  1. Darrel March 26, 2016 at 9:25 am #

    The mockery of the Lord Jesus, His death and resurrection, is in full season now. The catholic myth of “Good Friday” is perpetuated for yet another year and those who claim to love and serve the Lord Jesus Christ fall into the trap for another year—what a shame………what a sham!

    “For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” Matt. 12:40.

    Any way you slice it Friday afternoon to Sunday before sunrise ain’t three days and three nights, but the vast majority of professing “Christians” have opted for the Rodney King based theology: “ca, ca, can’t we just all get along?” No, we can’t just “all get along”, you’re either faithful to Him or you deny Him. CHOOSE.

    It is a mockery of the Lord Jesus because Christ said one thing (Matt. 12:40) but our theologians (Mike Riccardi, a product of John MacArthur’s CULT) have persuaded Christendom throughout the ages (since the inception of the rcc, thank you Augustine, et al) that Jesus didn’t know what He was talking about (they call Him a liar) and/or that man stepped in to change the events of the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus to fit their own newly created fantasy theology, commonly referred to as Arminianism, the “man has a free-will” cult and can overrule the Sovereign Lord of eternity as man sees fit.

    It’s too late to abstain from a “candle-light service” on Friday night this year, but now you have 365 days to consider whether you will attend next year’s. It really does boil down to “faithfulness or mockery”; “mockery or faithfulness”. Choose wisely.

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