Devotions Based on Hymns from Glory to God and Their Scriptural Allusions
READ: Exodus 5:1-21
Today’s hymn, Come, You Faithful, Raise the Strain, is an Easter hymn and is rightly placed in the “Jesus Christ: Resurrection” section of the hymnal. Verses 2 through 4 speak of Christ’s triumph over sin and death and the salvation that Christ brings to those who believe in Him. Our response is to “give laud and praise undying.”
While our redemption has occurred through this act, the hymn begins by reminding us of God’s mighty act to save the people of Israel. This salvific act of the Old Testament is recounted.
“God has brought forth Israel into joy from sadness, loosed from Pharaoh’s bitter yoke Jacob’s sons and daughters; led them with unmoistened foot through the Red Sea waters.”
With Pharaoh acquiescing to God and Moses’ demand to “let God’s people go,” the Israelites were freed from Pharaoh’s bitter yoke. By Moses’ outstretched arm the waters of the Red Sea were rolled back, and the people were able to cross on dry land. So dry was the land where the sea had been that the lyricist describes the Israelites as walking through with “unmoistened foot.” The lyricist is a poet in that the Hebrews did not walk through the Red Sea waters. Inasmuch as we are faith descendants of Abraham and Sarah, it is as if we, too, have treaded through those waters and experienced God’s deliverance from the Egyptian enemies who sought to destroy us too. Therefore, this hymn, “Come, You Faithful, Raise the Strain,” serves as an invitation to us.
O God, we praise and thank You that You are always ready, willing and able to rescue us from our foes and to save us. Inasmuch as we are children of Abraham and Sarah, we thank You that their history is our history too. We thank You for the deep peace You provide … a peace that this world cannot give. In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen.