Ponder Slice (for the Lord’s Day,03/14/10)

Much moving stress makes for little posting these days. Dwell on these words and the story behind them as you enjoy the Lord’s Day….

This remarkable hymn was written by an African pastor, Emmanuel T. Sibomana. He was born around 1915 and lived near Musema, a Baptist mission in central Burundi. He became a Christian in his late teens or his early twenties, and later became a Baptist pastor. Then, in 1946, he published a hymn titled “Umbuntu Bg Imana.” Pastor Sibomana’s hymn was translated by an English missionary in Rwanda, Rosemary Guillebaud, as “O How the Grace of God Amazes Me.”

Here are the words to the hymn.

O How the Grace of God Amazes Me

O how the grace of God
Amazes me!
It loosed me from my bonds
And set me free!
What made it happen so?
His own will, this much I know,
Set me, as now I show,
At liberty.

My God has chosen me,
Though one of nought,
To sit beside my King
In heaven’s court.
Hear what my Lord has done
O, the love that made him run
To meet his erring son!
This has God wrought.

Not for my righteousness,
For I have none,
But for his mercy’s sake,
Jesus, God’s Son,
Suffered on Calvary’s tree—
Crucified with thieves was he—
Great was his grace to me,
His wayward one.

And when I think of how,
At Calvary,
He bore sin’s penalty
Instead of me,
Amazed, I wonder why
He, the sinless One, should die
For one so vile as I;
My Savior he!

Now all my heart’s desire
Is to abide
In him, my Savior dear,
In him to hide.
My shield and buckler he,
Covering and protecting me;
From Satan’s darts I’ll be
Safe at his side.

Lord Jesus, hear my prayer,
Your grace impart;
When evil thoughts arise
Through Satan’s art,
O, drive them,
King of my heart.

Come now, the whole of me,
Eyes, ears, and voice.
Join me, creation all,
With joyful noise:
Praise him who broke the chain
Holding me in sin’s domain
And set me free again!
Sing and rejoice!

 

 

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