A Gospel Narrative – A Poem

From time to time, I enjoy reading, or even writing, a good poem.  Below is one of my favourites. It vividly illustrates the hope we have in the Gospel and the wretched state we would find ourselves in without it.  If you enjoy the poem make sure to pick up a copy of the book it comes from called A Gospel Primer“.

A Gospel Narrative, Poetic Version
by Milton Vincent

Beholding the heavens
I now understand
God measured them all
with the breadth of His hand.
He fashioned the trillions
of stars in the sky,
The sun and the moon
He established on high.
All heaven and earth,
which He made in six days,
Show daily and nightly
His merit of praise.

So wondrously caring
is God ev’ry day,
Creating, sustaining
my life ev’ry way.
Each breath I intake,
ev’ry beat of my heart,
All pleasures well tasted
are His to impart.
Indeed, for such blessings
He should be adored
And honored supremely
as eminent Lord.

In fact, for this purpose
He brought me to be,
That I might His glory
and kindliness see
And cherish Him fully
in all of my days,
Obeying with pleasure
whatever He says,
Fulfilling the calling
He’s laid upon me
To show forth His glory
deliberately.

Yet I could not fail God
much worse than I’ve done.
Ignoring His glory
for mine I have run.
I’ve spurned a life
under His wisdom and care,
Begrudged Him the throne
and pretended me there.
A prideful and lust-laden
path I have trod,
Transgressing all Ten great
Commandments of God.

My foolish rebellion
gives God ev’ry right
To damn me with haste
to the mis’rable plight
Of terrible judgments
in His Lake of Fire,
Where wrath is most fierce
and will never expire.
With wickedest sinners
I truly should know
The worst of Hell’s furies
for failing God so.

So this is my status
and these are my flaws
Apart from Christ Jesus
and His saving cause:
I carry sin’s guilt
and am gripped by sin’s pow’r,
Held fast to its
various lusts ev’ry hour,
Deserving of flames,
both within and without,
And sliding t’ward Hell
as I toss all about,

Too reprobate even
to play a small part
In clearing my record
or changing my heart
To pacify wrath
and be worthy of grace,
To make myself lovely
and win God’s embrace.
Completely condemned by
God’s Law in its whole,
I’ve nothing to offer
to ransom my soul.

But wonder of wonders,
so great to behold,
My God chose to save me
with method so bold.
What I could not render,
God fully has done,
And doing, He rendered it
all through His son.
He sent Christ to die
on the cross for my sin
To suffer my anguish,
my pardon to win.

Amazing it is, when I
stop to regard,
That would consent
to an anguish so hard,
Surrend’ring His Son
unto mayhem and death,
To torturous writhing
’til His final breath.
‘Why does God forsake me?’
alone Jesus cried,
Yet God left Him hanging
until He had died.

That Jesus was willing
His life to lay down,
Be scourged and insulted
and wear thorny crown
For one such as I
who had spited God so,
Amazes and blesses
and makes me to know
That greater a lover
is no man than He,
Who laid down His life
for a sinner like me.

Now after Christ died
He was placed in a tomb,
Which first was a grave,
but then served as a womb,
Travailing and quaking
the day He was raised
And brought forth by God
to be handled and praised.
The Firstborn from death
on that day emerged He
With power to save
to the utmost degree.

At God’s own right hand
Christ now reigns from on high,
A Friend in high places
to sinners who cry
To Him for forgiveness,
their evils confessed.
He gives them a pardon
and then makes them blessed.
As Prince He is Savior
to all who believe,
Who come to Him humbly
His grace to receive.

Now when my time came
and to Jesus I cried,
He gave me the pardon
for which I had sighed,
He cleansed me completely
from wrongs I had done,
Released me from bondage
to sins, ev’ry one.
He shattered sin’s chains
which had held me before,
And thus made me free
not to sin any more.

A child of the Father
He made me to be
And gave me the Spirit
as His guarantee
That, being God’s child,
I will one day obtain
A heavenly treasure
that will never wane.
While in me, the Spirit
gives power and love
And sweet premonitions
of glory above.

In saving, God also
did justify me,
Accounting me righteous
by His own decree,
Declaring me guiltless
of all my sin,
And bringing His wrath
against me to an end.
This wrath Christ appeased
in full brunt on the Tree,
When bearing my sin,
He endured it for me.

So now God relates
to me only with grace,
The former wrath banished
without any trace!
And each day I’m made
a bit more as I should,
His grace using all things
to render me good.
Yes, even in trials
God’s grace abounds too
And does me the good
He assigns it to do.

And when I am sinning
God’s grace does abound,
Insuring my justified
status is sound.
No wrath is awakened
in God at my sin,
Because Christ appeased it –
to say so again.
God’s heart pulses only
with passionate grace,
Which jealously wants me
back in His embrace.

God does not require
even that I confess,
Before He desires
His forgiveness to press.
Forgiveness has been
in His heart all along;
And when I approach Him
to make my right wrong,
He runs up to greet me
and draws to me near,
Embracing and kissing
and ready to clear.

God does see my sins
and He grieves at them so,
For when I am sinning,
His love I don’t know.
He even will send me
some heart-rending pain,
So I’ll learn new ways
and His holiness gain.
His disciplines always
are with love imbued,
A love that seeks ever
my ultimate good.

So this is my story;
ongoing it is.
How shall I thank God
for this gospel of His?
A gift that keeps giving,
the gospel confers
The bounty of heaven
each time I rehearse.
Deserve it? I don’t
on my holiest day;
But this is salvation,
and herein I’ll stay.

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