"Speak O Lord" lyrics

Discussion in 'Worship' started by Amos, Dec 30, 2011.

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  1. Amos

    Amos Puritan Board Freshman

    I just read the lyrics to this song, and wondered if anyone else has the same thoughts I do about them. Seems to me, singing the imperative of "Speak O Lord" is out of place for us to be telling God to speak, when he has already spoken all that is necessary for life and godliness.

    Speak, O Lord, as we come to You
    To receive the food of Your Holy Word.
    Take Your truth, plant it deep in us;
    Shape and fashion us in Your likeness,
    That the light of Christ might be seen today
    In our acts of love and our deeds of faith.
    Speak, O Lord, and fulfill in us
    All Your purposes for Your glory.

    Teach us, Lord, full obedience,
    Holy reverence, true humility;
    Test our thoughts and our attitudes
    In the radiance of Your purity.
    Cause our faith to rise; cause our eyes to see
    Your majestic love and authority.
    Words of pow'r that can never fail—
    Let their truth prevail over unbelief.

    Speak, O Lord, and renew our minds;
    Help us grasp the heights of Your plans for us—
    Truths unchanged from the dawn of time
    That will echo down through eternity.
    And by grace we'll stand on Your promises,
    And by faith we'll walk as You walk with us.
    Speak, O Lord, till Your church is built
    And the earth is filled with Your glory.
  2. MarieP

    MarieP Puritan Board Senior

    What, God isn't still speaking today???

    We often pray, speak to us by Your Word, give us ears to hear, may Your Spirit illumine and apply these truths to our hearts, so why shouldn't we also sing it?
  3. FenderPriest

    FenderPriest Puritan Board Junior

    We sing the hymn before hearing the Preached Word, which seems the intent of the hymn. In the fullest Reformed sense, God still speaks through his Word preached.
  4. Southern Presbyterian

    Southern Presbyterian Puritan Board Doctor

    From the Trinity Hymnal:

    Is this not the same idea?

    I know that when most Christians read God's Word it is with the full expectation that God will speak His truth to them. When they go to worship to sit under godly preaching, it is with the same expectation. When they pray, it with the hope that God will indeed act upon their requests (rightly presented).
  5. Jack K

    Jack K Puritan Board Professor

    It's fine to express a willingness to listen by inviting God to speak. Think of the boy Samuel. It shouldn't be taken as ordering God around, nor as if we were ignoring his Word. I suppose it might be bad if we took it one of those ways... and perhaps some people do... but it seems we can sing that song in a good way, too.
  6. 21st Century Calvinist

    21st Century Calvinist Puritan Board Junior

    Teach me, O Lord, the perfect way
    of thy precepts divine,
    And to observe it to the end
    I shall my heart incline.
    (Ps 119:33, Scottish Psalter)

    "Speak O Lord" doesn't really seem much different from the words of Scripture.
  7. Amos

    Amos Puritan Board Freshman

    The difference I see is, in telling God to speak - we are expecting a response from Him in words - which, if we believe the canon is closed and there is no further new revelation for this era of the church age, is telling God to do something we really don't expect Him to do, because He has already done it. I did a word search for "Speak O Lord" - and all I found was the reference to Samuel, where Eli told him to respond to God's specific calling of Samuel in that way. Have I missed other Biblical references? The issue here, I think, is different than "standing" or "teaching".
  8. Mindaboo

    Mindaboo Puritan Board Graduate

    That is actually one of my favorite hymns. I don't think it's an audible voice we're talking about. We're talking about His working through us with the Holy Spirit. I find lots of imperatives in the Psalms.
  9. Southern Presbyterian

    Southern Presbyterian Puritan Board Doctor

    From John Piper:

    Go to the link below for the rest of the article. I believe that God speaks in this way all the time.
    The Morning I Heard the Voice of God
  10. J. Dean

    J. Dean Puritan Board Junior

    I would say it's more of a plead or petition than it is a command.
  11. Amos

    Amos Puritan Board Freshman

    I think you are right. As my son just pointed out - that as long as it is tied (as it appears to be) to His Holy Word, this is okay. Thank you for your input.
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