Songs & Scripture: “Everlasting God (Strength will Rise)” (Brenton Brown, Ken Riley)

“It wasn’t like I got a word in the night and woke up and I heard God say, ‘Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord.’ It wasn’t one of those special moments. I mean I do remember people praying that over me. Of course, the danger with suffering from a chronic illness without being healed is you grow cold to some words. But I was pretty intentional about it. This is God’s promise to us. However it works out, however he chooses to bring His strength. He hasn’t chosen the way I would have chosen, so to sing those words, for me, it’s almost a redeeming action. This is where I am at, this is the truth of God, and this is His promise. He will look after my wife and me, and he will carry us through this time.”

~Brenton Brown, on writing “Everlasting God”, excerpt from this article on WorshipLeader.Com

Soaring Eagle
Soaring Eagle (Photo credit: w4nd3rl0st (InspiredinDesMoines))

Do you ever feel exhausted? Like, mind-numbing, fall-asleep-on-your-feet, not even have an emotional response for anything, exhausted? That pretty much sums up a lot of nursing school for me. The verses that I often went back to during that period of my life were Isaiah 40:28-31, which are the large basis for the song Everlasting God.

Whenever I can, I try to link to the story behind a worship song, and how worship pastor Brenton Brown initially started writing this song is an amazing testimony. Both he and his wife were diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), leaving them both physically and mentally drained. Maybe that’s you today. So read these lyrics encouraged, knowing that they’re not only heavily Scripturally based, but also written by someone who intimately knows what it’s like to be exhausted and has experienced God’s promise to carry you through it.

As usual, I’ve included the Scriptures that the original author of the song was thinking about, but have also included many cross-references to other Scriptures that relate to the lyrics as well.

For the full story behind Everlasting God, click here.

Everlasting God
Written by Brenton Brown and Ken Riley
CCLI#: 4556538

Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord (Psalm 31:24Isaiah 40:29-31, Isaiah 41:10)
Wait upon the Lord, we will wait upon the Lord (Psalm 27:14, Psalm 130:5-6, Proverbs 20:22Isaiah 8:17) (x2)

Our God, You reign forever (Exodus 15:18, Psalm 146:10, Lamentations 5:19, Revelation 11:15)
Our hope, our strong deliverer (Psalm 18:2, Psalm 56:13Psalm 144:2, Jeremiah 14:22, 2 Corinthians 1:10, 1 Timothy 4:10, Hebrews 10:23)

You are the everlasting God
The everlasting God
You do not faint
You won’t grow weary (Genesis 21:33, Psalm 121:4Isaiah 40:28)

You’re the defender of the weak (Psalm 12:5, Psalm 18:2-3, Psalm 59:9-10, Psalm 91:1-2)
You comfort those in need (Isaiah 40:1, Isaiah 51:12, Isaiah 66:132 Corinthians 1:3-4)
You lift us up on wings like eagles (Psalm 103:5Isaiah 40:31)

You are the everlasting God (Genesis 21:33Isaiah 40:28)
The everlasting God
The everlasting God
The everlasting (repeat x 2)

With love,

Lauren

p.s. Officially in the 5 digits for hits on the blog! Wow. I remember posting about getting 500 hits just a little while ago, and before starting this blog a short 5 months ago I would never have expected it to grow so exponentially. Thanks to everyone for reading, hope the music and the Scriptures bless you richly!

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Songs & Scripture: “Love the Lord” (Lincoln Brewster)

What is the greatest commandment in the Bible? How would you sum it all up? Old and New Testament, what does God require of us? Go!

Fortunately, Jesus answered this question for us, thanks to a slippery lawyer and a genuinely curious scribe:

And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:35-40, ESV)

And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this:‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” And the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that he is one, and there is no other besides him. And to love him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” And when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And after that no one dared to ask him any more questions. (Mark 12:28-34, ESV)

I love that both were recorded for our sake– both the man who wanted to trick Jesus and the man who really wanted to know from the Son of God what exactly God thought. But where is he getting this? Did Jesus pluck this out of the air? No; and every Jew would

The Nash Papyrus, containing the 10 Commandments & beginning of the Shema prayer. Discovered in 1902, it is estimated to date to 100-150 B.C.

have known exactly where he got this, as it was a part of the Shema, a prayer said at least twice a day by devout Jews to this day:

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. (Deuteronomy 6:4-5, ESV)

Interestingly, Jesus added one thing: did you catch it? Jesus added on the word “mind” from the original Deuteronomy text.  Upping the ante, as usual.

By the way, Jesus saying “love your neighbor as yourself” wasn’t just a summary of many commandments alone, either:

You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord. (Leviticus 19:18, ESV)

This song for today’s Songs & Scripture post, “Love the Lord” by Lincoln Brewster is basically a repetition of the Greatest Commandment, and therefore does not need my usual breakdown of verses and cross references, hence why I’ve included them all on the page.

Love the Lord your God
With all your heart
With all your soul
With all your mind
And with all your strength

With all your heart
With all your soul
With all your mind
And with all your strength

I will serve the Lord
With all my heart
With all my soul
With all my mind
And with all my strength

With all my heart
With all my soul
With all my mind
And with all my strength

I will love You Lord
With all my heart
With all my soul
With all my mind
And with all my strength

I will love You
And I will serve You
And I will praise You
For all my days yeah
And I will love You
I will love You
Yes, I will love You

Of course, we could never love God enough. Even without our other sins piling up, we can never love Him how He deserves and requires. Thanks be to God that He loved us first!:

In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:10, ESV)

We are all in need of Jesus’ blood as payment for our debt, and He provided that and His Holy Spirit to enable us to love Him the way this commandment talks about:

“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. (John 14:15-17, ESV)

And that, my friends, is the good news.

With love,

Lauren