From the psalms we read,
- “Thy lovingkindness, O LORD, extends to the heavens, Thy faithfulness reaches to the skies. Thy righteousness is like the mountains of God; Thy judgments are like a great deep, O LORD, Thou preservest man and beast. How precious is Thy lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Thy wings . . . For with Thee is the fountain of life . . .” (Psalm 36:5-7, 9 – NASB)
The psalmist tells us that from the “LORD” flows “the fountain of life.”
Tonight, a friend of mine and I bantered back and forth with each other about music in the church today. We talked about the great old hymns and how so many in the church miss out today on not only singing them but learning from them. As we talked we both started naming some of these great songs of the faith. One that came to my mind has been a favorite of mine for years. It was written around 1770 and was based on this Scripture text,
- “In that day a fountain will be opened for the house of David . . . for sin and for impurity” (Zechariah 13:1 – NASB)
The hymn was titled, “There Is A Fountain Filled With Blood.” The author of this great old hymn was William Cowper, a man who, having deep emotional problems, found Christ by reading the Bible while institutionalized.
The words are words this sinner has sung over and over again and marveled at . . .
- “There is a fountain filled with blood,
- Drawn from Emmanuel’s veins,
- And sinners, plunged beneath that flood,
- Lose all their guilty stains.”
Surely there “is a fountain” and it is one “filled with blood” and it is “drawn from Emmanuel’s veins.” Quite simply, the Creator took on flesh and blood and dwelt among us, being “God with us.” And He, in His work of redemption, allowed that His “blood” would flow from His “veins” and that this “blood” would be able to cleanse the lowly “sinner” from “sin and . . . impurity.”
- “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses” (Ephesians 1:7 – NASB)
And of whom does this speak? Who is this “Him?” It speaks of “Emmanuel.”
- “The dying thief rejoiced to see
- That fountain in his day;
- And there may I, though vile as he,
- Wash all my sins away.”
Often in the Scriptures we are urged to stop, to pause, and to think upon things, to ponder the truths of Scripture. When I look upon Psalm 36, or Zechariah 13, or read Ephesians, chapter one, verse seven, this old hymn comes to my mind . . . and the words flow from my heart,
- “E’er since, by faith, I saw the stream
- Thy flowing wounds supply,
- Redeeming love has been my theme,
- And shall be till I die.”
Oh yes Lord, “redeeming love has been my theme” as I have meditated upon “Thy flowing wounds supply.” There truly was a day when “from” Your very “veins” poured a most precious and holy “stream” of which I will sing praises about “till I die.”
- “Then in a nobler, sweeter song,
- I’ll sing Thy pow’r to save,
- When this poor lisping, stammering tongue
- Lies silent in the grave.”
Do you know this old hymn brethren? What reverential thoughts it brings to our minds . . . “a fountain filled with blood,” and that “blood” has flowed from “Emmanuel’s veins,” from God’s “veins.” And for every “sinner” who is “plunged beneath that flood” there is the great truth that they “lose all their guilty stains.”
Oh why have we ceased to sing the old hymns in our day?
Have a good day . . . and as I’ve often try to do, let me be an encouragement to you to develop a taste for the great music of the church, both past and present.
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