Ego Gone Wild (Esther 3)

A man who thought his rank deserved both honor and respect,

was angered when another failed to bow or stand erect.  

But, thinking it beneath him to lay hands on just one guy,

he paved the way with silver to annihilate a tribe. 

—–

The die was cast and plans were hatched through empire’s width and breadth.

A day was set for robbery and putting folks to death.

With glee the palace sat to dine, carve joints and pour some wines,

In city streets confusion reigned where many saw the signs. 

———-

Image:  Ahasveros geeft Haman toestemming te Joden uit te roeien, 1564

Source:  Esther 3

Text:  David Alexander, 2022, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune: Stettin, Public Domain

Score:  https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/2013/Score/TheSonOfGod-Stettin-NunSeht.pdf 

Audio:  www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission.

A Maiden’s Premier (Esther 2)

A man who listened to the gossip near the palace gate,

ambitious for his niece’s place within the halls of state, 

encouraged her to try to win a royal harem place

by means of pleasant character and beauty of her face. 

—–

It took a year of treatment at a spa controlled by men

before the maid was ready for the king to take her in.

She pleased him more than others (each of whom had had a night).

He held a banquet in her name to show his friends the sight.

—–

Not all was well in town, assassins planned to take the throne. 

The uncle told the niece who saw to it  the king was told.

The plot was squashed, the rebels hung, and all was back in place.

The uncle’s name was written in the record of the case. 

———-

Image:  J.-F. de Troy – Le repas d’Esther et d’Assuérus

Source:  Esther 2

Text:  David Alexander, 2022, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune: The Seven Joys of Mary , Public Domain

Score:  https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/2012/Score/OneHumanFamily-7Joys.pdf 

Audio:  www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission.

I Will Not Stand for It (Esther 1)

Drunk on his power, thinking himself grand, 

he sent some eunuchs, with a stern demand.  

Though he was sov’reign over many lands, 

Queen Vashti answered that she would not stand. 

—–

He summoned sages, who took up the case. 

Kings and all o-ther husbands would lose face. 

“For folks like us to stifle this disgrace, 

send her away and let her be replaced.” 

—–

Image: Edwin Long, 1870s 

Source:  Esther 1

Text:  David Alexander, 2022, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune:  National Hymn, Public Domain

Score:  https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/Score_PDF/GodOfOurFathers-NationalHymn.pdf Audio:www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission.

On “Gifts to God”

Some admired the gifts to God, pointed at the things they’d bought.

Jesus said, “They’re all for show; one day to the pit they’ll go.”

So they asked him for the date of the grandeur’s coming fate.

He replied, “Take care, don’t stray, some folks think they know the day.”

——-

“Many bad things happen first, then some more that will be worse.

Wars and quakes and famines, plagues. Signs in skies for many days.

Some will come to hear you speak, kings and queens will learn of me.

Don’t prepare to testify. But for words on me, rely. 

——-

Don’t look to your family. That’s where lurks your enemy. 

It’s because of me they hate; Yours is not their coming fate.

Not a hair you have will die. Your soul’s safe and you know why.

By endurance you’ll get through. I’m in charge, and that will do.  

———-

Image:   Ruínas da Capela de Nossa Senhora das Neves, 1884

Source: Luke 21:5-19

Text:  David Alexander, 2022, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune:   Hollingside, Public Domain

Score:   https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/Score_PDF/JesusLoverOfMySoul-Hollingside.pdf

Audio:  www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission 

Keep Away

In Jesus’ name, now, hear us say to keep away from folks who play.

Not pagans whom you should convert, but idle folks within the church.

They break traditions that we’ve taught. So keep your distance; be like God.

—–

Since you need models, look to us, ‘cause we don’t lie around and rust.

We pay for what we eat and more, we earn our keep (that’s what we’re for).

Entitlement is not the way that we want you to imitate.  

—–

If you won’t work, you shouldn’t eat. That goes for kids and elderly.

So grab your bootstraps, hoist yourselves. As Jesus orders, “do it well.”

You’re not permitted to get tired when you are busy doing right. 

———-

Image:   Burne-Jones The Pilgrim at the Gate of Idleness,  Dallas Museum of Art

Source: 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13

Text:  David Alexander, 2022, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune:   Jervaulx Abbey, Public Domain

Score:   https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/Score_PDF-2010/TheSaintsOfGod-JervaulxAbbey.pdf 

Audio:  www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission 

The God of the Living

Some people who thought that life ends when you die

asked Jesus to tell them about seven guys.

They’d all wed the same lady, one after one,

and each of them died without siring a son.

—–

“In heaven,” they asked, “if it truly exists, 

Which one of those men will have marital bliss?” 

“Not one,” Jesus answered. “In heaven, you’re free,

Of vows that were taken to keep faithfully.”

—–

And quoting from Moses he dared to go on,

where Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (his son)

were noted as present with God on that side;

the God not of dead, but of folks yet alive.   

———-

Image:   aranprime on Unsplash

Source: Luke 20:27-38

Text:  David Alexander, 2020, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune: Normandy (Basque Carol) , Public Domain

Score: https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/2012/Score/GodHoldsUs-Normandy.pdf 

Audio:  www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission 

Keep Your Wits About You

Keep your wits about you friends as ru-mors fly about.

Someone’s sure to have a verse and have “figured out”

things that even angels haven’t gotten to know.

Lots of stuff has got to happen, a lot of it slow.

—–

In the meantime, we give thanks that God has chosen you;

sanctified you for the glory of Jesus, too. 

So stand firm in what you read from us and hear us say.

Hold to grace and comfort from the Lord through these days. 

———

Image:  Johaer on Unsplash

Source: 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5 and 13-17

Text:  David Alexander, 2020, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune: Russell, Public Domain

Score: https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/2014/Score/YourServentIsBlessed-Russell.pdf 

Audio:www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission

Waken Us to Satisfaction

We’re not lyin’ God, we’re cryin’. Take a look and you will see.

Give an ear and you will hear our prayers from lips free of deceit.

—–

Make a start, come try our hearts, there’s no wickedness to see..

Even in the words we utter you’ll find no profanity.

—–

Save all people who seek refuge from what’s evil in their land.

Wicked adversaries threaten. Keep us safe at your right hand. 

—–

Guard and guide us, stay beside us, navigate us through the threat

from the ones who would despoil us, who prefer to see us dead.

—–

Rise, O Lord, and overthrow them. Do so in your righteousness.

Waken us to satisfaction, steadfast love and happiness.

———-

Image: mr lee on Unsplash

Source: Psalm 17

Text:   David Alexander, 2020 CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune:  Goldschmidt, Public Domain

Score: https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/2013/Score/DaysAndMoments-Goldschmidt.pdf 

Audio:  www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission. 

Worship Videohttps://youtu.be/3izKqtHLScY

Published!

O that my words were written down and published in a book; 

or carved into the walls around where everyone could look. 

I know that my redeemer lives, and who will get the final word. 

I know that when my body’s gone, the face of God is what I’ll see, 

To stand by me, eternally.  

——-

Image:  Belinda Fewings on Unsplash

Source: Job 19:23-27

Text:  David Alexander, 2020, CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune: Die Sach Ist Dein, Public Domain

Score: https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/MP3-2010/MP3-LordJesusChristThe-DieSachIstD-PipeLC-128-CAM.mp3

Audio:www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission

The Doer of Marvelous Things

O sing to the doer of marvelous things.

Shout out a new song to the king of all kings.

In sight of the nations where victory’s shown

God’s steadfast and faithful love surely are known. 

—–

A joyful noise make to the Lord, all the earth;

break forth into verses of praising and mirth.

Accompany songs with both drums and guitar.

Play loudly so you can be heard from afar. 

—–

Let oceans and rivers and mountains join in.

All beings on earth claim a share of the din,

for when the Lord comes we will all be set free

the judgment of God will confirm equity.

—–

Image:  Omer Nezih Gerek on Unsplash

Source:  Psalm 98

Text:  David Alexander, 2020  CC BY-SA NC 4.0

Tune: Datchet

Score: https://www.smallchurchmusic.com/2011/Score/WithGladness-Emma.pdf

Audio: www.smallchurchmusic.com  Used by Permission

Worship Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNnU_QxkBko