While This Liquid Tomb Surveying

A little over a year ago, I shared this baptismal hymn on one of my first blogs, after hearing it sung by Michael Wallace in our seminary chapel that Holy Week.  I thought of it again, today, as student preachers shared excellent sermons on Genesis 1:1-5, reflecting on this ancient confession of God’s creative ordering of watery chaos and its significance to this season of resurrection.  Today, I share it again as a powerful statement of our resurrection faith.  Sisters and brothers, Christ is risen indeed!  Alleluia!

“Baptism Hymn”

Hast thou said, exalted Jesus,

Take thy cross and follow Me?

Shall the word with terror seize us?

Shall we from the burden flee?

Lord, I’ll take it, Lord, I’ll take it,

And rejoicing, follow Thee.

Sweet the sign that thus reminds me,

Savior, of Thy love to me;

Sweeter still the love that binds me

In its deathless bond to Thee.

Oh, what pleasure, oh, what pleasure,

Buried with my Lord to be!

While this liquid tomb surveying,

Can I run from mercy’s wave?

Shall I shun its brink, betraying

Feelings worthy of a slave?

No! I’ll enter, No! I’ll enter;

Jesus enter’d Jordan’s wave.

Should it rend some fond connection,

Should I suffer shame or loss,

Yet the fragrant, blest reflection:

I have been where Jesus was,

Will revive me, will revive me,

When I faint beneath the cross.

Then baptized in love and glory,

Lamb of God, Thy praise I’ll sing,

Loudly with the immortal story

All the harps of heaven shall ring.

Saints and seraphs, Saints and seraphs

Love and worship then will bring!

-John Eustace Giles (1805-1875)


There will be a celebration of the life of Gerry Rodan on Saturday, April 26, at St. Paul’s UMC in Allison Park , PA, at 11:oo.  We thank all of you for your thoughts and prayers.  May light perpetual shine upon you, Mom!