Rev. Andrew Preus, pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church in New Haven, MO, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Lutheran Service Book #355, “O Savior, Rend the Heavens Wide.”
This Advent hymn by Friedrich von Spee begins by looking forward to the Last Day, as we ask our Savior to come down with great might and take us to our eternal home. As God refreshes His creation, so He sends Jesus as the true King, for He is the shoot from the stump of Jesse. Knowing that Jesus is our hope, we pray for Him to come quickly with His comfort. As the Morning Star, He shines His light into the darkness of our sin. We know that He will come to lead us out of the doom of sin and death and into His eternal Promised Land, where we will praise Him forever.
“The Hymns of Advent” is a series on Sharper Iron that looks at a variety of the hymns found in the Advent section Lutheran Service Book. The season of Advent prepares us for Christ’s coming. The hymns of Advent teach that this is more than getting ready for Christmas; the Word of the Lord sung in hymnody helps us to receive Christ as He comes to us now in the means of grace and when He comes again in glory on the Last Day.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
Lutheran Service Book 355
1 O Savior, rend the heavens wide;
Come down, come down with mighty stride;
Unlock the gates, the doors break down;
Unbar the way to heaven’s crown.
2 O Father, light from heaven send;
As morning dew, O Son, descend.
Drop down, you clouds, the life of spring:
To Jacob’s line rain down the King.
3 O earth, in flow’ring bud be seen;
Clothe hill and dale in garb of green.
Bring forth, O earth, a blossom rare,
Our Savior, sprung from meadow fair.
4 O Fount of hope, how long, how long?
When will You come with comfort strong?
O come, O come, Your throne forego;
Console us in our vale of woe.
5 O Morning Star, O radiant Sun,
When will our hearts behold Your dawn?
O Sun, arise; without Your light
We grope in gloom and dark of night.
6 Sin’s dreadful doom upon us lies;
Grim death looms fierce before our eyes.
O come, lead us with mighty hand
From exile to our promised land.
7 There shall we all our praises bring
And sing to You, our Savior King;
There shall we laud You and adore
Forever and forevermore.
Text: O Savior, Rend the Heavens Wide (Tr. © 1969 Concordia Publishing House)
Author: Friedrich von Spee, 1591-1635
Translator: Martin L. Seltz, 1909-1967
Tune: O HEILAND, REISS DIE HIMMEL AUF