Frustrating present

On Ecclesiastes chapter

Birth and death, and peace and war
– life on earth flows back and for’,
laughter, weeping, hatred sad,
love and kindness making glad,
times of useful, skilled production,
times of damage and destruction.

Ups and downs, life circles, swings:
joy and anguish this world brings,
want to see what’s futile, wrong
all expelled before too long.
Can’t quite grasp a sense of meaning
‘til a promised purpose gleaning.

For the Maker’s spoken Word,
says he’ll deal with what’s absurd
– unjust ‘justice’ swept away,
judgement fair he’ll bring one day.
We were made for somewhere better
and can find it with the Saviour.

So we can enjoy our life,
even though there’s war and strife,
trouble, hurt, but much that’s good
– trust, enjoy your work and food.
All you can achieve gives pleasure,
but await full perfect treasure.

False Announcements!

They asked him when he’d come again;
he said you cannot know just when –
only the Father knows the day.

So don’t be duped when people say
their own ideas, scripture twisting,
some special knowledge new insisting,
to give a date, absurd invention,
bizarre, unfounded speculation –
which just makes others sceptical,
that such an awesome spectacle
we’ll see one day – the King descending,
not as a Babe, but praise resounding.

So wait in expectation, ready,
with fixed anticipation steady,
and not (because of wrong predictions),
neglecting proper preparations.

“No-one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. … So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” Matthew 24:36, 44

The beginning and end of tears

This world, when all was brought to be –
the beauty, wonder we still see
was not yet marred in any way,
with no frustration, till fall’s day.
He who had mutinied, and lost
his place among the heavenly host,
became God’s enemy, until
an end to all his plans of ill.

So when God made the universe,
this Satan schemed, earned judgement’s curse;
he tempted Eve to doubt, rebel,
and so to sin and hurt she fell.
Could not for ever live like this,
their world and they were now amiss,
though still supported, all would groan
until salvation wrought, made known.

Christ came to pay the debt,  he will,
soon come again, and all fulfil,
and meanwhile hear now, heed his call
and friendship, like before the fall,
you can enjoy with God, and when
he comes, returns, a world that then
will have no damage, and no fears,
with happy work, no death, no tears.

Tune: LM or DLM ‘Ye banks and braes’

The thief going to paradise

The thief repentant, on the cross,
acknowledged all his sin and loss,
and asked the Saviour mercy free,
and humbly trusted Him, and we
can share his hope eternally:

People holy tell the story
of the glory of the Saviour;
praising ever, sinning never,
– Hallelujah!

‘Today you will be with me there’,
and in Christ’s glory he would share,
among the angels pure, and saints;
complete the blessings, no complaints,
for no-one suffers there, or faints.

Does this attract you, do you long
to go there, serve and raise your song
to him who reigns, salvation wrought
for those in Satan’s bondage caught,
to life and freedom, mercy brought?

People holy tell the story
of the glory of the Saviour;
praising ever, sinning never,
– Hallelujah!

“… we are getting what our sins deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong. … Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. …” ‘Today you will be with me in paradise’ Luke 23:41, 42
Tune: ‘Pwy sydd o fewn y nef yn byw?’ Joseph Parry

Jesus raises his people

Because he lives, I’ll ever live –
as he was raised, so soon will I,
for though this mortal body die,
when Jesus comes, returns, He’ll give
to me a body like his own
– then sin, decay will be unknown

Creation groans because the fall
has caused such problems, but they’ll cease
– we eagerly await release
when Christ returns, believers all
will meet him, fully made anew,
the universe made glorious too.
Tune: 88 88 88

Jesus speaks of coming days

Mark 13
As Jesus left the earthly temple,
scene of barenness and greed,
so he spoke of its destruction,
for its symbols were to lead
to the perfect Sacrifice,
to the Christ who would suffice.

Times of turmoil, trouble always
from the curse ’til time will end;
day of grace brings persecution,
but his gospel God will send;
and the Day he’s indicated,
will come surely as appointed.

Watch out, – not deceived by folly
things false teachers slyly say.
Watch out for his help in trouble,
watch out for his coming Day.
Not deflected, not unready,
vigilant, alert, and steady.

Christ’s Day is near

Romans 13:11-14
There is a day that soon will come;
soon see the hour of rising sun;
awake from slumber, rise to life,
let idleness be gone, and strife;
The day of Jesus Christ is near,
arise to serve in godly fear!

There is a robe of righteousness,
from God for those who Christ confess;
they, evil deeds must put aside,
and live like Christ, his humble bride,
protected as they war with sin:
they will by grace the battle win!

There is a work that we must do,
our vows, with zeal, let us renew,
and give no thought to fleshly lust,
but to the will of God, the just;
The day of Jesus Christ is near,
arise to serve in godly fear!
Tune: 88 88 88 eg Carey’s (Surrey) by Henry Carey
( tune of of ‘Who is a pardoning God like Thee’)

Has healed, can heal, will heal

A leper, ill, distressed, unkempt;
Christ had compassion, not contempt:
he touches – no contamination,
but, cleansing flows from him to heal
the leper – decontamination
from all he had to bear and feel.

A man so paralysed had friends,
who heard that Jesus heals and mends
trouble, sickness, disability:
they brought him close to the vicinity
where Jesus was instructing
and through the roof they lowered him
But first he pardoned, and some sneered,
‘God only can do that!’, thoughts jeered.
But Jesus then his power displayed,
authority to sins forgive,
by healing this paralysis:
and one day all that is amiss
he will put right, his kingship show,
but now trust and much blessing know,
and ask he pardon all you owe.

Running away

They run away and shake a fist.
They do not want him to exist.
[not understanding him aright,
– deficiency of knowledge, sight.]

But when they see him come, one day,
they’ll realise they can’t run away,
or hide, and wish they had come near
before, repentantly, for grace
and welcome, when they need not fear,
only submit, and listen, learn,
so that with joy they’d see his face.

‘Ascension Day’

Acts 1:1-11
Arising up and out of sight,
a cloud obscured,
angels assured
he will return as he has gone,
so go and tell and make him known,
his lordship many more will own:

for forty days he’d been supplying
abundantly full confirmation
of his astounding resurrection:
they now must wait his new empowering.