Tates Creek Christian Church

Updates and Insights from Tates Creek Christian Church

Greater Love Hath No Man

When I first heard the theme for the July issue of the Current, I immediately thought of the familiar text in John 15:12-13 where Jesus teaches his disciples with these words:  “My command is this:  Love each other as I have loved you.  Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
Then I fondly remembered a very powerful anthem that I sang in the Concert Choir of Cincinnati Christian University over 40 years ago.  This anthem was penned by Sir John Ireland in 1912 and is taken from the passage above, as well as several other passages of Scripture. This choral work had a profound impact on me and was rather difficult for us to learn.  It is written in 8-part harmony.  I also remember that I was given the opportunity to sing the baritone solo (back when I had better high notes in my register!) and, on the occasion where we had a fine pipe organ on choir tour, I was able to accompany the choir as they sang.  I simply offer this powerful text to you now as we acknowledge that the love of Jesus is greater than any other love in this world.

Many waters cannot quench love,
Neither can the floods drown it.  Love is strong as death.  ~Canticles 8

Greater love hath no man than this,
That a man lay down his life for his friends.  ~John 15:13

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree,
That we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness.  ~1 Peter 2:24

Ye are washed, ye are sanctified,
Ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus.  ~1 Corinthians 6:11

Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation;
That ye should show forth the praise of him
Who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.  ~1 Peter 2:9

I beseech you brethren, by the mercies of God,
That you present your bodies, a living sacrifice, holy,
Acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  ~Romans 12:1

I encourage you to go to youtube.com and type in the title followed by John Ireland.  You will find several fine video recordings.  Set aside a few minutes to worship as you are drawn into the music and text.

Don Seevers

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