677

For the Glories of God's Grace

Scripture References

Further Reflections on Scripture References

In 2 Corinthians 5: 18-21 the apostle Paul concludes a description of the ministry of reconciliation: we who have received God's reconciliation through Christ now have the joyful task of being God's agents of reconciliation in the world. So we urge others to believe and join us in singing, “We are reconciled to God.” Marie J. Post composed a poetic summary of this Scripture passage in 1985.

Confessions and Statements of Faith References

Further Reflections on Confessions and Statements of Faith References

The Catechism says that those who know Christ’s forgiveness are “to thank God for such deliverance” (Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 1, Question and Answer 2). As a result, “With our whole lives we may show that we are thankful to God for his benefits, so that he may be praised through us, and that we may be assured of our faith by its fruits, and so that by our godly living our neighbors may be won over to Christ” (Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 32, Question and Answer 86).

677

For the Glories of God's Grace

Call to Worship

Let us worship God,
who reconciled us to himself through Christ.
We are new creations;
the old has gone, the new has come!
Let us worship God as Christ’s ambassadors.
Through us and through our worship
may we announce the good news to all.
Let us worship God in spirit and in truth.
Praise God! We are reconciled, redeemed, renewed!
—based on John 4:24; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21
[Reformed Worship 34:19]
— Worship Sourcebook Edition Two

Assurance

If anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation:
everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!
All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ,
and has given us the ministry of reconciliation.
Receive the good news of the gospel:
In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.
—based on 2 Corinthians 5:17-18, NRSV
— Worship Sourcebook Edition Two

Additional Prayers

A Prayer of Thanksgiving for Reconciling Grace
O God, we give you hearty thanks for your matchless grace. While we were still sinners you loved us. While we were still strangers, you welcomed us. While we were still enemies, you befriended us. You are the God of reconciling grace through Jesus Christ. We thank you in his name. Amen.
— Cornelius Plantinga, Jr.
677

For the Glories of God's Grace

Tune Information

Name
MONKLAND
Key
B♭ Major
Meter
7.7.7.7
677

For the Glories of God's Grace

Hymn Story/Background

In 2 Corinthians 5:18-21 the apostle Paul concludes a description of the ministry of reconciliation: we who have received God's reconciliation through Christ now have the joyful task of being God's agents of reconciliation in the world. So we urge others to believe and join us in singing, “We are reconciled to God.” Marie J. Post composed a poetic summary of this Scripture passage in 1985.
 
The tune MONKLAND has a fascinating if complex history. Rooted in a tune for the text "Fahre fort" in Johann A. Freylinghausen's famous hymnal, Geistreiches Gesangbuch (1704), it then was significantly altered by John Antes in a Moravian manuscript, A Collection of Hymn Tunes (c. 1800).
 
MONKLAND received its present shape at the hands of John Lees in another Moravian hymnal, Hymn Tunes of the United Brethren (1824). From there John Wilkes simplified it and introduced it to Henry W. Baker, who published it in the English Hymns Ancient and Modern (1861) to his own harvest-theme text, "Praise, O Praise Our God and King." Wilkes named the tune after the village where he was organist and Baker was vicar–Monkland–located near Leominster in Herefordshire, England. Wilkes died around 1882; he should not be confused with the better-known John Bernard Wilkes (1785-1869).
 
MONKLAND's well-designed melodic contour is a good match for the text. Sing the tune in parts, except on the refrain line, which is appropriately sung in unison.
— Bert Polman

Author Information

Marie (Tuinstra) Post (b. Jenison, MI, 1919; d. Grand Rapids, MI, 1990) versified this psalm in 1983 for the Psalter Hymnal 1987. While attending Dutch church services as a child, Post was first introduced to the Genevan psalms, which influenced her later writings. She attended Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, where she studied with Henry Zylstra. From 1940 to 1942 she taught at the Muskegon Christian Junior High School. For over thirty years Post wrote poetry for the Grand Rapids Press and various church periodicals. She gave many readings of her poetry in churches and schools and has been published in a number of journals and poetry anthologies. Two important collections of her poems are I Never Visited an Artist Before (1977) and the posthumous Sandals, Sails, and Saints (1993). A member of the 1987 Psalter Hymnal Revision Committee, Post was a significant contribu­tor to its array of original texts and paraphrases.
 
— Bert Polman

Composer Information

John Antes (b. 1740; d. 1811) was a missionary, watchmaker, business manager, and composer. Born near the Moravian community of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, he was trained at the Moravian boys' school and later received religious education and further training as a watchmaker in Herrnhut, Germany. From 1770 to 1781 he served as a missionary in Egypt and from 1783 until his death was the business manager of the Moravian community in Fullneck, England. Although music was his avocation, Antes was a fine composer and musician. Among his compositions are a number of anthems, several string trios, and over fifty hymn tunes.
— Bert Polman

John Wilkes (b. England, date unknown; d. England, 1882) should not be confused with the better-known John Bernard Wilkes (1785-1869).
— Bert Polman
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