A Hymn Devotion for 9 February 2021 Anno Domini, the Anglican Orthodox Communion Worldwide
“The strangers shall fade away, and be afraid out of their close places. 46 The LORD liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted. 47 It is God that avengeth me, and subdueth the people under me. 48 He delivereth me from mine enemies: yea, thou liftest me up above those that rise up against me: thou hast delivered me from the violent man. 49 Therefore will I give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and sing praises unto thy name.”
(Psalms 18:45-49; all scripture quoted is from the King James Version)
It is not necessary to make a full introduction of the Godly lady who is the author of this biblical and doctrinally sound hymn. Crosby wrote, “Safe in the Arms of Jesus” and many other hymns. Among the other 8,000 hymns are “Blessed Assurance,” “All the Way My Savior Leads Me,” “To God Be the Glory,” “Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior,” “Rescue the Perishing,” and “Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross.” She wrote until the last year of her life at (5 years of age in 1915). The verses below are filled with biblical truth and beauty. The present hymn, BE THOU EXALTED, was written in 1901 when Fanny was 81 years of age.
BE THOU EXALTED
- Be Thou exalted, forever and ever,
God of eternity, Ancient of Days! (Dan 7:9, 13, 22, Pro 22:28)
Wondrous in majesty, perfect in wisdom, (Job 36:4)
Glorious in holiness, fearful in praise. (Exodus 15:11)
Be Thou exalted by seraphs and angels, (Psalm 47:9)
Be Thou exalted with harp and with song;
Saints in their anthems of rapture adore Thee,
Martyrs the loud hallelujahs prolong.
- Be Thou exalted, O Son of the Highest! (Matt21:9, *Lu 1:32)
Gracious Redeemer, our Savior and King! (Job Redeemer liveth)
One with the Father, co-equal in glory,
Here at Thy footstool our homage we bring. [Refrain]
- Be Thou exalted, O Spirit eternal!
Dwell in our hearts, keep us holy within; (2 Tim 1:14, Rom 8:10, Gal 1:15-16; 2:20)
Lead to Thy home in the life everlasting, (2 Cor 5:6-8)
Open its portals and welcome us in. [Refrain] (The Ark of Christ)
Be Thou exalted, forever and ever, God of eternity, Ancient of Days! Wondrous in majesty, perfect in wisdom, Glorious in holiness, fearful in praise” The LORD is the Ancient of Days who existed before all time and eternity. He never BEGAN to be, but has always, in all times and moments, been the Great I AM! “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. 14And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed,” (Daniel 7:13-14) and His Word bears the same nature of eternal application as does His Person: “Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.” (Proverbs 22:28) There are a lot of profiteers attempting to manipulate the Word of God with their phony new versions, but His Word will remain when their false books become ashes. God is the perfect plumbline of knowledge and truth: “For truly my words shall not be false: he that is perfect in knowledge is with thee.” (Job 36:4) He owns all the praise of His Elect: “Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?” (Exodus 15:11)
Be Thou exalted, O Son of the Highest One with the Father, co-equal in glory, Here at Thy footstool our homage we bring. All of Jerusalem turned out to greet the Redeemer on his last visit to that city and shouted: “…Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.” (Matthew 21:9) This is He of whom the Law and the Prophets spoke with detailed clarity. He was the Redeemer promised from old times. As olf Job proclaimed: “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: 26 And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: 27 Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.” (Job 19:25-26) He was proclaimed in many places the Son of the Father: “He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:” (Luke 1:32)
Be Thou exalted, O Spirit eternal! Dwell in our hearts, keep us holy within; Lead to Thy home in the life everlasting, Open its portals and welcome us in. We exist in a double presence if we are in Christ. First: we dwell IN Him; and secondly, He dwells in us. That union is far too close for division. “That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us.” (2 Tim 1:14) and, “And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” (Romans 8:10-11) and we are in Christ the Son and God the Father: “And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. 20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” (John 17:19-23)
As the hymnist says, we have confidence to follow in the leading of the Lord to the very portals of Heaven: “Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: 7(For we walk by faith, not by sight:) 8We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 5:6-7) To what or whom do those portals belong and what do they signify? These are the doors of the Heavenly Sheepfold which Christ is – the very Door of our latter-day Ark of Salvation. No one can open, and no one can shut, but the great Lord God.
Be Thou exalted by seraphs and angels, Be Thou exalted with harp and with song; Saints in their anthems of rapture adore Thee, Martyrs the loud hallelujahs prolong. The refrain simply expresses what our attitude and allegiance should be since the Lord is exalted in all things whether according to our exaltation or not. The saints will be most pleased to enter the portals of Heaven to the chorus song of the martyrs of old (and of recent days).
“The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.” (Psalm 47:9)