Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Acrostic Psalm

An acrostic poem is one where you start each line (or couplet, or stanza) with consecutive letters of the alphabet. Several of the Psalms are Hebrew acrostics - since there are 22 letters in the Hebrew alphabet, if you find a psalm that has 22 (or 44, or 66) lines, odds are that was one of them.

Famously, Psalm 119, the longest chapter of the entire Bible, is an acrostic psalm with EIGHT full verses dedicated to each letter. (It makes me long to know Hebrew to appreciate it more. My wife started learning it before she died, and found it daunting.)

Here's my attempt from the book God, Jesus Christ, The Holy Spirit...

Acrostic Psalm
by Gordon Paul Smith

Alleluia, my Lord Almighty above, my soul belongs to You.
All of my heart, my mind, my thoughts, my dreams, and my body do, too.
Across the expanses of space and time, we ask our Father above:
Allow these words, these praises and prayers, to sing You this psalm of love.

Before the land and oceans fair were separated and sheared,
Beyond the skies, the fiery laws of physics and time appeared,
Beneath the firmament, heavenly hosts sang of the marvels to come.
But on the earth, an image of Thine: Your second begotten son.

Christ, of course, we call Your child: Your Son, with whom You are pleased;
Carried by virgin Mary He was, and killed on Calvary.
Creating Adam was different, though: flawed with free will and sin.
Could a mortal have known the damage he’d do by letting the serpent in?

Did You? Of course. You’re God. You knew. For our sake You made this world.
Doubt not that Satan did just what God planned, that He knew all that would unfurl.
Destiny’s just another name for God’s preeminent plan;
Don’t ever wonder if life turned out the only way that it can.

Every event, both good and bad; the worst, in-between, or the best:
Even the terrible things: the deaths, the loss, were His way to test.
Everything good would pump you up, and every bad thing deflate,
Ego and sorrow, failure or win – it tempers you for your Fate.

For your happiness here is temporary; your sadness, even more so.
Freedom and servitude, pain and joy are transient, as you know.
Far-sighted Christians understand what happens to us when we die:
Finding eternity waiting for us, our Lord Jesus there to say “Hi.”

Going to heaven cannot be described, though certainly many have tried.
God waits for us there, of that much we’re sure, with our relatives who have died.
Get out of your mind the pictures of harps and sitting around on a cloud,
Grasp onto instead His radiant Light and His angels singing aloud.

Having said all of that, the most important thing for Christians to do
Here on earth, before we leave, is to help the unsaved who
Have failed to find Jesus, or worse than that, have not understood at all:
“Highway to Hell” is not just a song – it’s their destiny when they fall.

Imagine then, heathen son of the world, what happens to you when you die:
It’s not just the worms that consume your corpse – you’ll have bigger fish to fry.
Inside your body a heavenly soul was waiting for you to set free:
Instead, the lake of fire and sulfur will be there for Satan and thee.

Just two choices waiting for you; just two ways your story can end:
Jesus can guide you to the Light, or to Darkness you will descend.
Joyful He’ll be if you choose His Path, if you choose to walk at His side:
Jerusalem killed the Savior so He could welcome in those who abide.

Kissing the hem of His robe’s not sufficient – He wants us as family.
Kindred to Christ! What a glorious thought! Like brothers with Jesus we’ll be!
Kindly He listens, and gently He speaks, but firmly He guides us because, as
King of Kings, He needs us to grow into heirs who behave as He does.

Lord of Lords, He is, as well as our model of Heavenly Man.
Like Christ we strive to become as blameless and free of sin as we can.
Let His holiness fill your soul; let the Spirit come plant His Seed:
Love is the answer; Love is the ritual; Love is all you need.

Mightier than the pen or the sword, God’s Love is stronger than strong.
May the forces of evil assault you, but still His Love will never go wrong.
“My Love will protect you from all those who hate, and shield you from those who are mean.”
Many a demon can be driven away by First Corinthians Thirteen.

No love, yet speaking in angelic tongues? No love, though prophetic pow’r?
Not boasting nor bragging, nor rejoice at wrongdoing; not arrogant, rude, nor sour;
Nor can I hope prayer, or a charitable heart, could overcome love untried.
Never ending, never pretending – faith, hope and Love abide.

Omnipotent God, who created the world, in whose power we all must depend;
Omniscient God, who knows what we think, and still lets us call Him our friend.
Omnipresent God, who exists everywhere, available twenty-four / seven,
Oh, Lord, what have we done in our sordid lives to deserve Your favor in Heaven?

Please recall, as sinners we all have earned none of His Fatherly Grace.
Pray all that you want to, there’s nothing to do, no heavenly test you can ace.
Put every last one of your “good works” aside, for none of it does any good:
Praise Jesus instead, for dying for us, for nails thrust through flesh into wood.

Quite above and beyond what mortals could fathom; what you and I both would dread.
Quietly He defended Himself against Pharisee calls for His head.
Quitting must have seemed plausible when He asked God to rethink His plan, but
Quixotically, He went ahead with God’s call to give Himself up for Man.

Realize, sinners, what He went and did, though never a sinner Himself,
Recoil in horror when you think about using our Lord’s wrists like a bookshelf.
Regurgitation of John Three-Sixteen is only applicable if
Resurrection on Easter is added in, too: that’s what made His dying signif…

Significant for us, for His death and rebirth show us God has that planned for us, too.
So heaven awaits for those who concede the throne of their life to the Jew.
Salvation for us comes in worshipping Him, who died for us and was reborn;
Submission to Christ, to His every command, isn’t just holding a cross to mourn.

Too many “Christians” believe that that name comes from wearing a cross ‘round their neck.
The Devil will gladly take all of them in when they find themselves “darned to Heck”.
Though public display of a cross or a fish is noteworthy, it’s only a start.
Trusting in Jesus, obeying His word is the only true way to His Heart.

Unless you are willing to stick your neck out, to give yourself wholly to God,
Ubiquitous flauntings of paraphernalia only strikes Jesus as odd.
Unlike Satan’s minions, the cults and false preachers, who also claim kinship to Him,
Under His teachings you must live your life, or like them in brimstone you’ll swim!

Vast is His glory, and great is His name, and loving to His flock is He.
Verily, God is an infinite source of love and good tidings to be.
Voices that seek your attention are many, and few of them truly are good.
Vile are the mouths that would guide you away from the Biblical truths that withstood

Weeks and Years and Decades and Days of earthly assault and decay,
Worldly attacks on His Word are so common, they must cause His heart such dismay.
Who would dare question His Holy Commands? Who would deign doubt His dominion?
Why would one think that what God had pronounced would need any second opinion?

Where does man get the prideful idea that just because he’s double-heliX,
His ideas are smarter or better for us than the One who’s on the crucifix?
Too much of the time, man’s texting address came from area code six-six-siX,
And he hopes, but in vain, that the wrath he hath wrought won’t land him on his coccyX!

Yet, every time we dig ourselves deep, we turn to our Lord, hat in hand,
Yearning for Him to forgive us our sins, despite our previous demand.
“You really must listen to Me, My Child,” we hear and (hopefully) obey,
“Your failures demand repentance, you know”, and the best of us respond, “OK.”

Zealously, then, we pray to our Lord, whom His chosen will follow hereon,
Zero will be His patience for those who, when knowing what’s wrong, press on.
Zephaniah knew the distress we would feel when we relied on our silver or gold:
Zip! Zing! His cleaver will slice His New Man away from the old.

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