Friday, March 13, 2009

Hymn of the Month--March

The church's one foundation
is Jesus Christ her Lord;
she is his new creation by water and the Word.
From heaven he came and sought her
to be his holy bride;
with his own blood he bought her,
and for her life he died.
Elect from every nation, yet one o'er all the earth;
her charter of salvation,
one Lord, one faith, one birth;
one holy name she blesses, partakes one holy food,
and to one hope she presses,
with every grace endued.
Though with a scornful wonder
we see her sore oppressed,
by schisms rent asunder, by heresies distressed,
yet saints their watch are keeping;
their cry goes up, "How long?"
And soon the night of weeping
shall be the morn of song.
Mid toil and tribulation, and tumult of her war,
she waits the consummation of peace forevermore;
till, with the vision glorious,
her longing eyes are blest,
and the great church victorious
shall be the church at rest.
Yet she on earth hath union
with God the Three in One,
and mystic sweet communion
with those whose rest is won.
O happy ones and holy!
Lord, give us grace that we
like them, the meek and lowly,
on high may dwell with thee.
The Church's One Foundation is a Christian hymn written in the 1860s by Samuel John Stone.
Samuel John Stone lived from April 1839 until November 1900. He was an ordained minister in the Church of England and is mostly remember for this hymn. He attended Pembroke College, Oxford and gained his BA in 1862 and later, was awarded his MA in 1872. He served as a curacy at two churches before he became minister of Haggerston.
The hymn was written as a direct response to some teaching, considered unorthodox at the time, by John William Colenso, first Bishop of Natal, which created schism within the church in South Africa.
In Christ,

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