hymnal“I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions” Isaiah 43:25

One of my favorite composers was the late great Charles Wesley. He gave us hundreds of great hymns and praise choruses. During the late 1700’s he and his brother, John, provided much inspiration to the emerging Protestant Reformation. Their thoughts and songs continue to bless the churches and congregations that sing these amazing hymns.

I appreciate a wide variety of worship music, but the rich theology of those wonderful hymns written in other eras stand alone. Unfortunately, many younger worship leaders do not give the proper credit and listening time to the old hymns of the faith. Wrapped in the mystic of trying to be “seeker sensitive” too many new worship leaders devalue the wonder and majesty of the old hymns that actually teach us Scripture and many lessons about life.

When Charles Wesley experienced the joy of divine forgiveness, he told a Moravian friend of his new sense of pardon, and added, “I suppose I had better keep silent about it.” His friend responded, “Oh, no, my brother. If you had a thousand tongues, you should go and use them all for Jesus.”

After hearing the admonishment of his friend, Charles Wesley went home and penned these words found in a great hymn: “Oh for a thousand tongues to sing/MY great Redeemer’s praise, /The glories of my God and King, /The triumphs of His grace!”

In a world filled with wickedness, God says to all who believe, I’m the One who can blot out your sin. That is called grace, my friend. Amazing Grace – it is that unmerited favor we seek and receive from God Almighty. It is this truth that caused me at thirteen to receive Christ as my Savior. When Louise and I rediscovered Christ at a Billy Graham Crusade several years later, we then made Him Lord of our lives. These are the truths that we regularly share with individuals and audiences who do not know about Jesus.

For some, grace is a gift left over from the Christmas or Easter seasons that needs to be unwrapped by all of us who need forgiveness. A gift given but never opened has no value. Whatever our sin, whatever our failures, and whatever we feel about ourselves–we must remember that the gift of forgiveness is a wonder to our faith. It is God saying that the sacrifice of His Son on Calvary’s Cross covered the sins of mankind. The one condition He placed upon His gift is that it would be received.

In order to receive we must believe. Have you received God’s gift? Open your heart and ask Him to forgive and receive you into His Kingdom. Amen

Personal Application:

1. Have you really unwrapped the saving grace and truths found in Scripture? If not, try reading the New Testament book of John.
2. Whom do you know who could receive a big dose of God’s grace? Could you share with them how God’s love and forgiveness has sustained you?
3. Read and reflect upon, “I am the gate; whoever enters through Me will be saved.” John 10:9

So many people are longing for something positive in their life. If this has inspired you please pass this along

Jim Grassi, D. Min.