Friday, December 31, 2010

New Years Eve Thoughts and Hymn

This year we lost my dear father, who we called Opa. Mercifully, Opa came to a saving faith in Jesus before he went home to be with the Lord. Many years ago, the great pastor and teacher Charles Spurgeon wrote this devotional on December 31 as the year came to an end, and he thought of those who still had not received the gift of eternal life:

"Reader, suppose you should die unsaved, your doom no words can picture. Write out your dread estate in tears and blood, talk of it with groans and gnashing of teeth: you will be punished with everlasting destruction from the glory of the Lord, and from the glory of His power. A brother's voice would fain startle you into earnestness. O be wise, be wise in time, and ere another year begins, believe in Jesus, who is able to save to the uttermost. Consecrate these last hours to lonely thought, and if deep repentance be bred in you, it will be well; and if it lead to a humble faith in Jesus, it will be best of all. O see to it that this year pass not away, and you an unforgiven spirit. Let not the new year's midnight peals sound upon a joyless spirit! Now, NOW, NOW believe, and live"

"The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved." — Jeremiah 8:20

Across the Sky the Shades of Night- Hymn for the New Years Eve http://nethymnal.org/htm/a/s/asshades.htm This link will allow you to hear it, read about the author, and hear the memorable original Lutheran evangelical hymn from 1539.


Lyrics:

Across the sky the shades of night
This New Year’s Eve are fleeting,
We deck Thine altar, Lord, with light,
In solemn worship meeting;
And as the year’s last hours go by,
We raise to Thee our earnest cry,
Once more Thy love entreating.

Before the cross subdued we bow,
To Thee our prayers addressing,
Recounting all Thy mercies now,
And all our sins confessing;
Beseeching Thee this coming year
To keep us in Thy faith and fear
And crown us with Thy blessing.

And while we pray, we lift our eyes
To dear ones gone before us,
Safe home with thee in paradise,
Whose peace descendeth o’er us;
And beg of Thee, when life is past,
To reunite us all at last
With those who’ve gone before us.

We gather up in this brief hour
The memory of Thy mercies;
Thy wondrous goodness, love and power
Our grateful song rehearses;
For Thou hast been our Strength and Stay
In many a dark and dreary day
Of sorrow and reverses.

Supporting Scriptures:

“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.” Psalm 121:1

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