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Notes on the Notes – October 4, 2020

Creation 4

To Live as God’s People

Exodus 20:1-4, 7-9, 12-20 

This week’s music:

“In Christ There is No East or West” (VU #606)

“In Christ there is no east or west, in him no south or north,
But one great family of love throughout the whole wide earth.In Christ there is no east or west

In him shall true hearts everywhere their high communion find;
His service is the golden cord close binding humankind.

Join hands, then, people of the faith, whate’er your race may be;
All children of the living God are surely kin to me.

In Christ now meet both east and west, in him meet south and north;
All Christ-like souls are one in him throughout the whole wide earth.”

The words of this hymn come from The Pageant of Darkness and Light (1908), a musical production of the London Missionary Society.  A revised version was made for Songs for a Gospel People (1987).  In Voices United, the words are set to the tune, MCKEE.   It is an arrangement by Harry T. Burleigh of a tune sung by the Fisk University choir in the 1880s.   Over the century since it was first written, the focus of this hymn has shifted from world missions in the early 20th century to a great hymn of Christian unity for the 21st-century church.  Hear the hymn  at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9TuT1FyPUQ

“Open Your Ears, O Faithful People” (VU #272)

“Open your ears, O faithful people,
Open your ears and hear God’s word.
Open your hearts, O faithful people,
God now speaks to you.

They who have ears to hear the message,
They who have ears, now let them hear.
They who would learn the way of wisdom,
Let them hear God’s word.

God has spoken to the people, hallelujah!
And those words are words of wisdom, hallelujah!”

Willard F. Jabusch is a faulty member at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, Illinois.  He wrote this song, based on the Jewish Talmud, in 1985 for the traditional Hasidic melody.    The melody has been arranged by Richard Proulx, an American composer, organist and choir director.

“From the Slave Pens of the Delta” (VU #690)

“From the slave pens of the delta, from the ghettos on the Nile,
Let my people seek their freedom in the wilderness awhile”:
So God spoke from out of Sinai, so God spoke and it was done,
And a people crossed the waters toward the rising of the sun.

“From the aging shrines and structures, from the cloister and the aisle,
Let my people seek their freedom in the wilderness awhile”:
So the Son of God has spoken, and the storm-clouds are unfurled,
For his people must be scattered to be servants in the world.

When we murmur on the mountains for the old Egyptian plains,
When we miss our ancient bondage, and the hope, the promise, wanes,
Then the rock shall yield its water and the manna fall by night,
And with visions of a future shall we march toward the light.

In the maelstrom of the nations, in the journey into space,
In the clash of generations, in the hungering for grace,
In our agony and glory, we are called to newer ways
By the God of our tomorrows who is God of earth’s todays.

This hymn was written by Herbert O’Driscoll of Victoria, British Columbia.  The words link the story of Exodus with the contemporary need for freedom and justice.  It was published in The Hymn Book (aka The Red Hymn Book) in 1971.

“Ten Commandments”

“Moses climbed the mountain high,
God spoke to Moses from the cloud of smoke.
Lightning flashed and the mountain shook and thundered when God spoke.

Ten commandments God did give to you and me to help us live
That we may learn to love our God, and live together in peace.

Number one says WORSHIP GOD
Number two says MAKE NO OTHER GODS
Number three, RESPECT GOD’S NAME – DON’T USE IT CARELESSLY!
Number four says TAKE ONE DAY TO REST, AND HONOR ALL GOD MADE.
So every week we work and play and worship on the Sabbath day.

Number five says LOVE YOUR MOM AND DAD.
Number six says DON’T KILL ANYONE.
Seven says BE FAITHFUL TO EACH OTHER WHEN YOU’RE A PARTNER FOR LIFE.
Number eight says DO NOT STEAL
Nine says DON’T TELL LIES ABOUT EACH OTHER,
Number ten says DO NOT WANT TO TAKE WHAT BELONGS TO ANOTHER.

Ten commandments God did give to you and me to help us live
That we may learn to love our God, and live together in peace.”

This re-telling of the giving of the Ten Commandments to Moses was written by Jean and Jim Strathdee in 1991.

“O For a World” (VU #697)

“O for a world where everyone respects each other’s ways,
Where love is lived and all is done with justice and with praise.

O for a world where goods are shared and misery relieved,
Where truth is spoken, children spared, equality achieved.

We welcome one world family and struggle with each choice
That opens us to unity and gives our vision voice.

The poor are rich, the weak are strong, the foolish ones are wise.
Tell all who mourn: outcasts belong, who perishes will rise.

O for a world preparing for God’s glorious reign of peace,
Where time and tears will be no more, and all but love will cease.”

Miriam Therese Winter, a professor of liturgy and worship at Hartford Seminary in Connecticut, wrote this hymn for a Presbyterian Women’s Triennial Conference.  It was later re-crafted and recorded by the Medical Mission Sisters.  The tune AMZON is a German tune, more familiarly known as the tune for the hymn “O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing.”

Hear the hymn sung in worship at Strathroy United Church:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_vALZ-m7b8s

To Ponder:

When in your life has a limit that was placed upon you become a gift?

Categories: Notes on the Notes