REVELATION SONG

By: John Dowdell


Sanctus Dominus, Deus Sabaoth. [Holy Lord, God of Hosts.]
Pleni sunt coeli et terra Gloria. [Heaven and earth are full of your glory.]

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain;
Holy, holy is he.
Sing a new song to him who sits on
Heaven’s mercy seat.

Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,
Who was, and is, and is to come.
With all creation I sing praise to the King of Kings.
You are my everything, and I will adore you.

Clothed in rainbows of living color,
Flashes of lightning, rolls of thunder;
Blessing and honor, strength and glory and power be
To you, the only wise King.

Filled with wonder, awestruck wonder,
At the mention of your name.
Jesus, your name is power, breath and living water,
Such a marv’lous mystery.



Psalm 96:1 proclaims, “Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth!”

This coming Sunday, Trinity’s Young Adults will be singing the Lord a new song, a version of Revelation Song originally penned by Jennie Lee Riddle in 1999. This specific arrangement, composed by David Angerman, is particularly fascinating, in that it combines this modern praise song with a backdrop of classic Latin worship text.

The layering of these distinct texts is my favorite aspect of this piece, and in a way it serves to mirror this line from the chorus, describing the Lord God Almighty: “…who was, and is, and is to come.” In a sense, the Latin text represents the historic worship of the God who was. Fittingly, the arrangement begins with a stately and classic reflection on these timeless words. Then, as the piece progresses, the Latin lyrics are rhythmically accelerated to accompany the modern praise song melody, which represents the contemporary worship of the God who is. It’s wonderful imagery – the praise of today being built atop the foundation of the praise of yesterday; in a worship sense, it is the passing of a baton. Together, they point us towards the worship of the God who is to come, as praise songs continue to build on the foundation of worship that has been sung before. In all these cases, there is remarkable consistency in the message – throughout all generations, our God is indeed holy and worthy of our praise!

On Sunday, Pastor Doug emphasized the need for us to honor God’s holiness, especially in the video demonstrating the folly when we make church about us rather than about God. When God is properly aligned in the center of our vision frame, it positively affects our priorities, our prayers, our scripture reading, our giving, and our behavior. We probably all have areas somewhere in this list where we could take a less self-centered approach; this week, is there any area in particular you would want to center more on God?

After all, as we have sung about yesterday, as we sing about today, and as we shall sing through eternity – Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty! You are my everything, and I will adore you!

Dear Father, As we have sung throughout the centuries, you are holy, and we join all of creation in singing your praise. Thank you for the song writers – past, present, and future – who give us such beautiful music and language to express your praise. As we go through this week, may we consider the aspects in our lives that should be more God-centered, and with your help may we give them more to you. Be with us all this week. In your holy name, Amen.

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