Posted by: rcottrill | May 7, 2018

God Our Father, We Adore Thee

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Words: George West Frazer (b. ____, 1830; d. Jan. 24, 1896)
Music: Beecher, by John Zundel (b. Dec. 10, 1815; d. July ___, 1882)

Wordwise Hymns (none)
The Cyber Hymnal

Note: The Cyber Hymnal says of the author: “Son of a police inspector, Frazer came to Christ at a revival meeting in Dublin led by evangelist Grattan Guiness. Employed at a Dublin bank, Frazer worked at evangelism on the side. He eventually left banking to devote full time to evangelistic work.”

Through history there’ve been expressions of prejudice, and struggles for equality in society. Whether by gender, or by the colour of one’s skin, or something else, there’s sometimes been an attempt to treat one segment of society as inferior, and for one group to deny rights to another, or curtail the freedoms of another.

One example is the enslavement of blacks in America. And, sadly, prejudice against them didn’t end with the Civil War and President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. There followed another century of segregation, Jim Crow restrictions, and abuse. From all accounts, things are greatly improved, but are not yet where they should be.

Another example of this is the treatment of women. Even well into the twentieth century in North America, women did not have a vote. And the struggle for equal pay for equal work still goes on, as well as the need to combat the tendency of too many men (and the media as well), to treat women as sex objects to be exploited, failing to see them as individuals worthy of respect as persons, with important contributions to make to society in many ways.

It’s a subject, deserving of more space that we can give it here. Suffice to say that all Christians stand before God on an equal footing. “There is neither Jew nor Greek [Gentile], there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:28). Let that be our standard too.

And equality of standing extends to God Himself, in a unique way. Though we cannot explain it, orthodox Christianity has always accepted the Bible’s teaching that there is one God (Deut. 6:4), but that He eternally exists in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Father is God (Eph. 2:20); the Son is God (Tit. 2:13); the Spirit is God (Acts 5:3-4)–yet there is only one God. This is the triune nature of the Almighty.

It shouldn’t bother us that we cannot completely understand and explain the Trinity. God is transcendent and, though He has revealed Himself to us to some extent, much about Him remains beyond the comprehension of finite human beings. All three persons of the Godhead minister uniquely but in perfect harmony (Matt. 3:13-17; 28:19; II Cor. 13:14; Eph. 2:18).

The Holy Spirit is called “the Spirit of God” many times in the Bible. He was active in creation (Gen. 1:2; Job 33:4); He was the divine cause of the virgin birth (Lk. 1:35); and He was the One who gave us the inspired Scriptures (II Tim. 3:16; II Pet. 1:21). The Spirit of God dwells in the hearts of believers (I Cor. 3:16; 6:19). If this is not so, we are not saved (Rom. 8:9).

God the Son was also involved in creation (Jn. 1:3). Later, He came to earth to reveal the Father to us (Jn. 1:14), and to die for our sins (I Cor. 15:1, 3-4). Great as God’s holy angels are, they are commanded to worship the Son (Heb. 1:6, 8). The Lord Jesus Himself says, “All should honour the Son just as they honour the Father” (Jn. 5:23).

There are many Trinitarian hymns, including the familiar Holy, Holy, Holy, which speaks of “God in three persons, blessed Trinity.” Irish hymn writer George Frazer gave us another. In his song he tells us Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are each worthy of our adoration. To “adore” God, a synonym for worship, means to view Him with the utmost esteem, respect, and love. All three persons of the Trinity are worthy of the equal honour of our adoration.

Note: “Abba” is an affectionate term for a father, used several times of God the Father (Mk. 14:36; Rom. 8:15; Gal. 4:6). An Aramaic word, it’s difficult to translate precisely. God is being addressed as “dearest Father.”

Paraclete (stanza 3) is the English form of the Greek word parakletos, meaning one called alongside to help. The Lord Jesus was just such a Helper and Encourager. But with His ascension He was sending “another Helper,” the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14:16-17, 26; 15:26; 16:7, 14).

CH-1) God, our Father, we adore Thee!
We, Thy children, bless Thy name!
Chosen in the Christ before Thee,
We are “holy without blame;”
We adore Thee! We adore Thee!
Abba’s praises we proclaim!
We adore Thee! We adore Thee!
Abba’s praises we proclaim!

CH-2) Son Eternal, we adore Thee!
Lamb upon the throne on high!
Lamb of God, we bow before Thee,
Thou hast brought Thy people nigh!
We adore Thee! We adore Thee!
Son of God, who came to die!
We adore Thee! We adore Thee!
Son of God, who came to die!

CH-3) Holy Spirit, we adore Thee!
Paraclete and heavenly Guest!
Sent from God and from the Saviour,
Thou hast led us into rest.
We adore Thee! We adore Thee!
By Thy grace forever blessed:
We adore Thee! We adore Thee!
By Thy grace forever blessed!

A fourth stanza (see the Cyber Hymnal) draws the three persons of the Trinity together in a final note of praise.

1) What are some of the ministries of the Holy Spirit now, in the Church Age?

2) Do you know some other hymns that speak of the triune nature of God? (Over sixty of these are listed in the Cyber Hymnal.)

Wordwise Hymns (none)
The Cyber Hymnal


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