Thursday, August 17, 2017

Rise up!

Rise Up!

Rise up, O men of God!
Have done with lesser things.
Give heart and mind and soul and strength
to serve the King of kings. (
William Merrill)

This hymn above by William Merrill is a call to action for men in ministry to “Rise up! It is saying to give everything to serve God regardless of circumstances, trial or trouble. I have sung this hymn in the midst of over 3 million other men in a 1997 Sacred Assembly in Washington D.C. to pray for our nation and its leaders. I think we are being called again today to do the same.

The photograph taken by my cousin Douglas Frank depicts for me a person standing straight and firm as a rock pillar amidst others, friend or foe. Whenever the ark set out, Moses said, ‘“Rise upLord! May your enemies be scattered; may your foes flee before you.”’ (Numbers 10:35). This was Moses call to God for help against their foes in the desert, which should be our cry. Yet, we too must rise to the occasion. ‘“Rise up; this matter is in your hands. We will support you, so take courage and do it.”’ (Ezra 10:4). In the historic Prophet Ezra admonishing the Israelites to “Rise up,” after they had confessed their sin and made a new covenant of obedience to God.

David, the “sweet singer of Israel,” and warrior king wrote Psalm 20 to strengthen his men to rise up and stand firm against their enemies. “They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm” (Psalm 20:8). He frequently sought God’s help through his psalms to rise up against the foe. Isaiah the Prophet reminds his people that God will rise up for them as well.

This is not only an Old Testament call. It is for today! We are to rise and stand firm against the enemy for he prowls around looking for someone to devour, as the Apostle Peter reminds us. It is not easy as persecution rises also. It takes courage in the midst of the storm to stand. We need to encourage one another to do just that. It is a call to arms in the sense of the spiritual battle for righteousness in the face of moral decline in our nation.

O, by the way, this is for both men and women of God to “Rise up!”

Douglas Frank Photograph

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