Daily Lent Devotions from Church Street UMC
Friday, March 26
By Bill Gray, March 6, 1977
Hope of the World
Read: Romans 5:1-5
Georgia Harkness, one of the great women theologians of our day, has contributed one of the most powerful hymns to our United Methodist Hymnal “Hope of the World.” This hymn was submitted and chosen (from some 500 others submitted) as the theme hymn for the second assembly of the World Council of Churches. It has become a favorite at Church Street, but I would like to encourage you to read the text as poetry. Read the text carefully to discover its deep truths.
“Hope of the world, thou Christ of great compassion,
Speak to our fearful hearts by conflict rent.
Save us thy people, from consuming passion,
Who by our own false hopes and aims are spent.
Hope of the world, God’s gift from highest heaven,
Bringing to hungry souls the bread of life.
Still let thy spirit unto us be given,
To heal earth’s wounds and end her bitter strife.
Hope of the world, a-foot on dusty highways,
Showing to wandering souls the path of light.
Walk thou beside us lest the tempting byways
Lure us away from thee to endless night.
Hope of the world, who by the cross didst save us
From death and dark despair, from sin and guilt.
We render back the love thy mercy gave us;
Take thou our lives, and use them as thou wilt.
Hope of the world, O Christ, O’er death victorious,
Who by this sign didst conquer grief and pain.
We would be faithful to thy gospel glorious;
Thou art our Lord! Thou dost forever reign! Amen.”
Heavenly Father, whose glory it is always to have mercy, be gracious, we beseech thee, to all who have erred and gone astray from thy holy Word and bring them again in steadfast faith, to receive and hold fast thine unchangeable truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever. Amen.