By Request, ‘A Mighty Fortress’

This hymn request from Joshua came along just when I needed it–A Mighty Fortress Is Our God, sung a capella by the Haven of Rest Quartet.

“My high tower, and my deliverer…”  Psalm 144:2

‘Thee Will I love, My Strength, My Tower’

Requested by “thewhiterabbit,” this is Thee Will I Love, My Strength, My Tower, sung by the Lighthouse Baptist Church Choir. Reminiscent of Psalm 144: “Blessed by the Lord my strength… my high tower, and my deliverer.”

It’s Personal!

Image result for images of worshipping the golden calf

How many times have we encountered this? “My grandson that I really, really love was so unhappy because he couldn’t marry his boyfriend; but now he can, and he’s just so happy! And I’m happy that he’s happy, so I’m all in favor of gay marriage and that’s why I have the Rainbow Flag on my lawn…”?

Moral standards that are handed down by God, and have stood unchanged for thousands of years, must quickly give way–because someone is “unhappy” with them. Naturally, we want our loved ones to be “happy.”

Even if we don’t quite know what the word means, anymore.

The Bible believes in happiness. “Happy is that people, that is in such a case; yea, happy is that people, whose God is the Lord” (Psalm 144:15). “[H]e that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he” (Proverbs 14:21). But the word is never used to describe sexual anarchy.

Still, for the sake of whatever “happiness” is, people with blinding speed discard the moral code in which they were raised. There was once a baby shower here, in front of this apartment building, complete with DJ and free beer, to celebrate an impending out-of-wedlock birth. The mother-to-be, who had not yet divorced her husband, was having the baby by her shiftless, no-good boyfriend. And the yard was full of “happy” people “celebrating” the event which, at one time in their lives, they would have viewed as a moral calamity. Mr. Boyfriend, by the way, stuck around long enough to beget another child by this woman, then fled the scene. Leaving the baby strapped into a car seat, Mommy worked full-time while Mr. Boyfriend played video games and gambled.

But they were “happy” for a while.

Are God’s laws bad because, if we obey them, they keep us out of messes like this? Or are they just bad because God doesn’t like us to be “happy”?

But, hey, well, if we’re gonna trust other sinners, if we’re gonna trust What’s Happenin’ Now, instead of trusting God… God doesn’t know what’s best for us, but Bill Nye the Science Guy does. Anything to be “happy”–right?

‘My Countris ‘Tis of Thee’

What’s he doing, posting a patriotic song? We’re supposed to have a hymn!

But pay attention to the lyrics of the last verse. …Protect us by thy might, great God our King. Other countries have no king but Caesar; but happy is that people whose God is the Lord (Ps. 144:15). The song is called “America,” but the words could apply to any country.  No nation can do any wiser than to place itself under God’s protection.

Psalm 144, ‘Blessed Be the Lord My Strength’

Blessed by the Lord my strength, King David wrote, that teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight; my goodness and my fortress, my high tower and my deliverer…

This rendition of the psalm is by the Rochester Cathedral Choir. You may want to follow along in your Bible–if, like me, you have trouble picking up lyrics as they’re sung.

For there will be conflict, and the Lord must be our strength.

‘Praise to the Lord the Almighty’

Enough of staring in appalled amazement at the daily news–let’s seek peace and refuge in praise of our Lord, the Rock of our salvation–“My goodness and my fortress, my high tower and my deliverer: my shield, and He in whom I trust” (Psalm 144).

This is the London Philharmonic Choir, plus some lovely illustrations of God’s handiwork.

God’s stuff works, even if ours doesn’t.