Faithful Through Another Year

“Faithful Through Another Year”

This hymn was written by Henry Downton, an Anglican minister who for a time served as English chaplain in Geneva.

We sing it to a version of the tune, GOTT SIE DANK DURCH ALLE WELT, from Freylinghausen’s Geistreiches Gesangbuck, which you can hear by clicking the embedded video beneath the text of the hymn.

The second verse draws on the common thought of a fresh start of a new year, but connects it to Scripture.  Philippians 3 tells us to forget those things which are behind and press forward.  But the reason we can forget the things behind is not that a new year is started, but the work of our Saviour, the perfect Sacrifice for our sins.  When we trust in His cleansing and forgiveness, we truly can then forget and press forward, for God Himself has said He will remember our sins no more.

For Thy mercy and Thy grace,
Faithful through another year,
Hear our song of thankfulness;
Father and Redeemer, hear.

Lo! our sins on Thee we cast,
Thee, our perfect Sacrifice;
And, forgetting all the past,
Press towards our glorious prize.

Dark the future: let Thy light
Guide us, bright and morning Star:
Fierce our foes, and hard the fight;
Arm us, Saviour, for the war.

In our weakness and distress,
Rock of strength, be Thou our Stay;
In the pathless wilderness
Be our true and living Way.

Keep us faithful, keep us pure,
Keep us evermore Thine own;
Help, O help us to endure;
Fit us for the promised crown.

Henry Downton, 1818-1885
Music:  Freylinghausen’s Geistreiches Gesangbuck, 1704, alt.

“For this reason, God gave them up to vile passions”

schori

This Sunday the fellow that preaches at our little church will be headed for Africa, so I will be filling the pulpit. About the middle of last week, I started to feel drawn to a particular text in Romans. Didn’t know why.

Now I know why (From Christian News Wire, via Slice of Laodicea):

In a lopsided vote, deputies to the General Convention of the Episcopal Church have effectively repealed a moratorium on the consecration of further gay bishops.

Following initial votes in the church’s House of Deputies on Sunday and House of Bishops on Monday, the House of Deputies gave final passage with 72 percent of the vote to an amended version of resolution D025 on Tuesday afternoon. The resolution affirms “that God has called and may call such individuals, to any ordained ministry in The Episcopal Church.”

The newly-adopted resolution essentially counters another resolution passed three years ago, in which dioceses were urged to “exercise restraint” in the consecration of practicing homosexuals as bishops. The effect of that resolution was to tenuously keep the Episcopal Church connected to the broader Anglican Communion for the intervening three years.

The Anglican Communion is divided over hot button issues like homosexuality and scriptural authority, with U.S. Episcopal church leaders being more theologically and politically liberal than their overseas counterparts. IRD supports a conservative perspective that affirms traditional church teachings.

Romans 1:26-27, 32For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting…knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

Archbishop of Canterbury: ‘Christian doctrine is offensive to Muslims’

Mail Online

Source: Mail Online

In a highly conciliatory letter to Islamic leaders calling for an alliance between the two faiths for ‘the common good’, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, pronounced that not only is Christian doctrine offensive to Muslims, but that the Christian belief in the Trinity – that God is Father, Son and Holy Ghost at the same time – ‘is difficult, sometimes offensive, to Muslims’.

The Archbishop went on to push an ecumenical social ‘gospel’, saying:

‘We can together speak for those who have no voice or leverage in society – for the poorest, the most despised, the least powerful, for women and children, for migrants and minorities; and even to speak together for the great encompassing reality that has no voice of its own, our injured and abused material environment.’

Where’s that heckler who ranted against Gene Robinson when we need him, again?

Source: Mail Online.