My Redeemer is Faithful and True (and other ways music intersects with faith)

Oh, that my words were recorded,
    that they were written on a scroll,
that they were inscribed with an iron tool on lead,
    or engraved in rock forever!
 I know that my redeemer lives,
    and that in the end he will stand on the earth. – Job 19:23-25

The Saturday morning men’s group I meet with has launched a new study that should take us through the next ten-to-twelve weeks. It’s such a great concept I may well turn it into a book. In the meanwhile, I’ll share what we’re up to and maybe some of you – my blog readers – will chime in with some stories of your own (you can either email me or use the comments section).

Essentially, my idea is to use a favorite piece of music to share a spiritual truth, as it has interfaced with our own life experiences.

Each man will be taking a turn leading, building the morning’s discussion around a hymn – or any piece of music – that speaks to their understanding of faith and tells an authentic story about their relationship with God.

Faithful and True:

Steven Curtis Chapman

Last week I got the ball rolling with Steven Curtis Chapman’s classic testimony, My Redeemer is Faithful and True. I found a couple of scriptures that support the main idea, taught the guys the chorus, then played guitar and sang my interpretation. I also shared a couple of stories where the song – and its scriptural foundation – has played a part in my story as a follower of Jesus.

Additionally, interspersed throughout the hour, I asked some discussion questions inviting the guys to share ideas and testimonies around the faithfulness of God in their own experiences.

The best story I had comes from the first time I heard Steven Curtis Chapman sing. I’m not sure of the year (circa 1990), but we brought Chapman to Pensacola for a Sunday evening concert at Trinity Presbyterian Church. It was just before he won his first Grammy so he was still kind of affordable.

The young musician flew in Saturday in time for dinner. Rebekah wanted him to sing during worship Sunday morning, but it was a hard sell for the holdout stuffy elements of our church. “OMG, not a guitar in worship!” But she prevailed and the church held its collective breath as the long-hair from Nashville stepped up with his six-string and commenced to sing.

That was the first time I ever heard My Redeemer is Faithful and True and it has become a kind of anthem for my life. Thanks, Steven.

As I look back on the road I’ve traveled,
I see so many times He carried me through;
And if there’s one thing that I’ve learned in my life,
My Redeemer is faithful and true.
My Redeemer is faithful and true.
My Redeemer is faithful and true.
Everything He has said He will do,
And every morning His mercies are new.
My Redeemer is faithful and true.
My heart rejoices when I read the promise
‘There is a place I am preparing for you.’
I know someday I’ll see my Lord face to face,
‘Cause my Redeemer is faithful and true.
My Redeemer is faithful and true.

Really, Jesus absolutely is faithful, true, wide-open full with grace, and deeply merciful too  – DEREK

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