We are commanded to, "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs." (Colossians 3:16). Accordingly, we incorporate hymns into our regular Sunday morning worship at Pacific Hope Church. We firmly believe in equipping God's people with the knowledge of His Word through sound teaching in our classes, Bible studies, and even in our Sunday morning worship. Our worship will always be with the purpose of exalting the Lord to His proper place; it is never man-centered or seeking to create an emotional experience.
How Deep (Click to listen)
by Stephen Altrogge, (based on the prayer, "Love Lustres at Calvary" from The Valley of Vision)
You were broken that I might be healed;
You were cast off that I might draw near.
You were thirsty that I might come drink,
Cried out in anguish that I might sing.
How deep is Your love!
How high and how wide is Your mercy.
How deep is Your grace!
Our hearts overflow with praise
You knew darkness that I might know light,
Wept great tears that mine might be dried.
Stripped of glory that I might be clothed,
Crushed by Your Father to call me Your own!
February’s Hymn of the Month, How Deep, was written for an album of songs inspired by and named for The Valley of Vision, a collection of Puritan prayers taken from the writings of men like John Bunyan, Isaac Watts, David Brainerd, Augustus Toplady, William Jay, Henry Law and Charles Haddon Spurgeon. The album was produced by Sovereign Grace Music in 2006.
“Love Lustres at Calvary” is the particular prayer that inspired Stephen Altrogge to write How Deep. In it, we are simply—yet profoundly—reminded of the infinite love of Christ that took on our sin, exchanging it for the righteousness of God so that as believers we no longer stand condemned.
“The Puritan prayer, Love Lustres at Calvary, describes this great exchange: we receive Christ’s holiness and forgiveness while Christ takes upon himself our guilt and just judgment. As an act of love, God gladly made this unfair, one-sided trade of our selfishness and pride for Christ’s righteousness and holiness. Therefore, we can live a life of intimacy with the Father because Christ has made all things right. This great exchange means that we can live on a daily basis an exchanged life of victory.
“At Calvary, the greatest of all exchanges occurred. Jesus Christ, the one who is fully man and fully God, truly innocent and without sin, took upon himself all our selfishness, rebellion, and hate and substituted his righteousness, forgiveness, and love. Christ bore the just judgment of God for our miserable sins, guilt, and shame. Some theologians call this act, double imputation. I call it glory.”1
From “The Valley of Vision”
Love Lustres at Calvary
Enlarge my heart, warm my affections, open my lips,
supply words that proclaim ‘Love lustres at Calvary.’
There grace removes my burdens and heaps them on thy Son,
made a transgressor, a curse, and sin for me;
There the sword of thy justice smote the man, thy fellow;
There thy infinite attributes were magnified,
and infinite atonement was made;
There infinite punishment was due,
and infinite punishment was endured.
Christ was all anguish that I might be all joy,
cast off that I might be brought in,
trodden down as an enemy that I might be welcomed as a friend,
surrendered to hell’s worst that I might attain heaven’s best,
stripped that I might be clothed,
wounded that I might be healed,
athirst that I might drink,
tormented that I might be comforted,
made a shame that I might inherit glory,
entered darkness that I might have eternal light.
My Saviour wept that all tears might be wiped from my eyes,
groaned that I might have endless song,
endured all pain that I might have unfading health,
bore a thorny crown that I might have a glory-diadem,
bowed his head that I might uplift mine,
experienced reproach that I might receive welcome,
closed his eyes in death that I might gaze on unclouded brightness,
expired that I might forever live.
O Father, who spared not thine only Son that thou mightest spare me,
All this transfer thy love designed and accomplished;
Help me to adore thee by lips and life.
O that my every breath might be ecstatic praise,
my every step buoyant with delight, as I see my enemies crushed,
Satan baffled, defeated, destroyed,
sin buried in the ocean of reconciling blood,
hell’s gates closed, heaven’s portal open.
Go forth, O conquering God, and show me the cross, mighty to subdue, comfort and save.