Sunday, February 10

Hidden In A Cleft

Colossians 3:3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.

The ruins of ancient cliff dwellers have been preserved at Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. As the photo above shows, villages were built in the clefts of cliffs. These buildings provided the inhabitants protection from the elements, enemies, and wild animals. The only way to reach these settlements was with tall ladders, which could be pulled up from the valley floor if necessary. The inhabitants were basically hidden in plain sight from many kinds of harm. They lived in the cleft of a rock.

What peace and comfort it is for Christians to know that the same kind of cleft is available for their spiritual well-being in the person and work of Jesus Christ. He is the rock of our salvation and in him we are not only saved from wrath, but we are also made pure and spotless by his blood sacrifice on the cross of Calvary. There is simply no other way that sinful humans can be accepted by a Holy and just God since the labor of our hands cannot pay this infinite sin debt. Thou must save and Thou alone is the message of the hymn below. Thus, lost sinners flee to the cross for the grace and mercy that is provided by the Rock of Ages. Christians are safe from all spiritual harm when they are hidden in the cleft of this rock. What a joy it is to reflect on line two below where sinners come to Christ and ask to be hidden in his grace and mercy. Praise God, for we know that his cleft is large enough for all who come in faith.

Rock of Ages
Words by: Augustus M. Toplady

Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee;
Let the water and the blood,
From Thy wounded side which flowed,
Be of sin the double cure;
Save from wrath and make me pure.

Not the labor of my hands
Can fulfill Thy law’s demands;
Could my zeal no respite know,
Could my tears forever flow,
All for sin could not atone;
Thou must save, and Thou alone.

Nothing in my hand I bring,
Simply to the cross I cling;
Naked, come to Thee for dress;
Helpless look to Thee for grace;
Foul, I to the fountain fly;
Wash me, Savior, or I die.

While I draw this fleeting breath,
When mine eyes shall close in death,
When I soar to worlds unknown,
See Thee on Thy judgment throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.




8 comments:

jazzycat said...

I was amazed at how a leading "Christian" best selling author on national television tonight failed to articulate the gospel when asked directly by the host on how one gets to heaven.

If you are a seeker, please look over the words of these great hymns and check out Chritianity 101 at the upper right under Photo Devotionals.

mark pierson said...

You are quite good at these devotionals. I hope your pastor is utlizing you to the fullest in helping the congregation to get a sense of the glories of His salvation provided in Christ.

donsands said...

"Could my zeal no respite know,
Could my tears forever flow,
All for sin could not atone;"

I love this hymn as well. I love the new tune where Wes King sings this great hymn. And i like the old melody as well.

Good words Jazzy. Thanks. Keep on.

jazzycat said...

Mark and Don,
Thanks. Your encouragement means a lot to me.

Shiloh Guy said...

Naked, Helpless, Foul, I to the fountain fly; Wash me, Savior, or I die!

I have to admit, such awesome lyrics leave most of our worship songs far behind in the dust!

What beautiful descriptions of grace!

Dave

jazzycat said...

Dave,
Good to hear from you.

swordbearer said...

Jazzycat,

I LEARNED something from this. I've always thought of individuals (or even battallions) hiding out in the cleft of a rock, but not making one's home in the cleft of a rock. I like this. Powerful illustration! As that they say: That will preach! I will go one step further to say That WILL preach!

Jazzy's Pastor

jazzycat said...

Tim,
Thanks. Since I use my own photos for illustrations, I was real pleased when I found this one for this hymn.