Let Us Wonder
Let Us Love and Sing and Wonder has been one of my favorite hymns for a number of years. I was first introduced to it (being the youngling that I am) by Jars of Clay on their Redemption Songs album. The arrangement was a new one from Indelible grace which matched a beautiful melody and chorus to these amazing words. What I love about this hymn is its simplicity and depth. That may sound like an oxymoron, but what I mean is that it captures deep theological truth in simple phrases. The first verse gives us a great example of this:
"He [Christ] has hushed the Law's loud thunder,
He has quenched Mount Sinai's flame."
Such a simple phrase, but what depths of truth! The thunder of the Law was its ability to convict and condemn. The flame of Sinai was a reminder of the unapproachableness of God. Each of these came at the same time Moses was receiving the Law, and both are remedied by the person of Christ who brought grace to the Law and tore the veil that kept us from approaching the Father. This is why we sing the opening phrase "Let us love and sing and wonder, let us praise the Savior's name."
As the song continues we see each of those themes expanded. We have a verse that speaks of loving the Lord who bought us even when we were enemies. Another verse speaks of the wonder of God's grace and mercy; of His justice that is satisfied with the sacrifice of Christ. The final verse we sing speaks to our joining with the chorus of saints who have gone before us. It points us to the hope we have in heaven and the joy of worshiping God forevermore.
This hymn was written by John Newton, a man intimately acquainted with wondering at God's grace. His more famous hymn, Amazing Grace, is one that also captures the awe we should all feel as we worship God. He certainly knew the depths of his own sin which led to his wonder at God's goodness.
Sadly, it seems that many of us have lost our wonder at the things of God. We come to church, sit in our usual seats, stand when we're supposed to, and listen attentively when someone is talking. But do we have wonder? Do we stand in awe at what God has done for creation, for our own souls? Do we understand the depths of our sin and the eternal punishment that Christ suffered for us?
As we come to worship, my prayer is that God would restore to each of us "the joy of our salvation" as David writes. I pray that we would truly know the depths of God's grace.
As we gather, "let us love and sing and WONDER; let us praise the Savior's name..."