In Christ Alone — A Lenten Reflection

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I love the theme of the 2016 Youth Gathering: In Christ Alone. If you haven’t read it yet, check out the thematic primer for an in-depth study of the theme. We find the roots of this message in Paul’s book to the Philippians. The theme echoes the tenants of our Lutheran faith: Grace Alone, Faith Alone, Scripture Alone.

 

There is also a powerful, modern hymn that bears the same name, In Christ Alone. I would like to take time to reflect on the lyrics of this hymn, especially as it makes a strong connection to our current Lenten reflections.

If you’d like, listen along as you read:

 

In Christ alone my hope is found

He is my light, my strength, my song

This Cornerstone, this solid ground

Firm through the fiercest drought and storm

What heights of love, what depths of peace

When fears are stilled, when strivings cease

My Comforter, my All in All

Here in the love of Christ I stand

In the first verse, I am reminded of several passages of Scripture. As the melody of the song streams through your mind, let your fingers take a walk through the Bible and look at these passages: Psalm 62:5-8; John 8:12; Psalm 28:6-9; Ephesians 2:19-22; Romans 8:38-39; Ephesians 3:16-19. What verses come to mind when you reflect on your Savior Jesus? Share them in the comment section below.

In Christ alone, who took on flesh

Fullness of God in helpless babe

This gift of love and righteousness

Scorned by the ones He came to save

‘Til on that cross as Jesus died

The wrath of God was satisfied

For every sin on Him was laid

Here in the death of Christ I live

In my Lenten reflections, I often find myself following Christ’€™s journey from the cradle to the cross. The second verse of Keith Getty and Stuart Townend’s song takes the same route. Christ’€™s journey reflects the message of our salvation. Christ’€™s actions are the fulfillment of God’€™s promises. Read Romans 6:3-4.

There in the ground His body lay

Light of the world by darkness slain

Then bursting forth in glorious Day

Up from the grave He rose again

And as He stands in victory

Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me

For I am His and He is mine

Bought with the precious blood of Christ

Although our Lenten worship is more focused on the passion of Christ, we know the story does not end with the cross but leads to the empty tomb. All of the sin that is a part of our lives and this world finds its release in the resurrection of Jesus. We live in confidence that Christ has conquered everything. We can stand because of Christ alone!

No guilt in life, no fear in death

This is the power of Christ in me

From life’s first cry to final breath

Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man

Can ever pluck me from His hand

Till He returns or calls me home

Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand

The life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ shape our lives. When this Lenten season is ends, the journey from cradle to cross moves heavenward. The hope of the resurrection points to Christ’€™s ascension. Like the disciples, we look to God’€™s Word and anticipate Christ’s glorious return. This is what we will celebrate at the 2016 Youth Gathering. Until the next blog…

Jennifer Probst
Community Life Adult Leader Hospitality at LCMS Youth Gathering
Jennifer Probst is a graduate of Concordia University Nebraska with a degree as a Director of Christian Education. Her LCMS Youth Gathering experience dates back to the 1995 San Antonio Gathering. This will be Jen’s eighth Gathering. She has served as an Adult Group Leader, Community Life Builder, and now as a part of the Gathering Planning Team.