No mortal tongue can e’er describe

1
No mortal tongue can e’er describe
  The freedom of the soul,
When passed beyond all earthly bribe
  To God’s complete control.
All things are his, yes, life, and death,
  Things present or to come;
In Christ he draws in peace each breath,
  In Christ he finds his home.
2
When such as we the King can choose,
  To share with Him His throne,
’Tis passing strange that we refuse
  To be our Lord’s alone.
O never speak of sacrifice!
  A privilege untold
Is to be His at any price,
  In Calv’ry’s hosts enrolled.
3
Arise! the holy bargain strike—
  The fragment for the whole—
All men and all events alike
  Must serve the ransomed soul.
All things are yours when you are His,
  And He and you are one;
A boundless life in Him there is,
  And kingdom yet to come.

The last line of the last verse is originally: Whence doubt and fear are gone.

17
Tom

Milwaukee, United States

What a beautiful hymn. There is indeed complete freedom of the soul when found in its original home of Christ, who restores all things. There must be a better word than the word "control" in the first stanza, but I can't find a good one that rhymes. God is after something deeper than simply his controlling us, something along the lines of his will and our will aligned as one out of the love he pours into our lives. Yes, ultimately he is in control, but it seems like a word that reflects perfect harmony would fit his design better, of providing us with a free will that we use freely to do his will. Anyone have any thoughts here?


Steve Miller

Detroit, Michigan, United States

We sang this song today in church to go along with the message on Philippians 1:20-30 on "How to Live and How to Die".

Phil 1:20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope

that in nothing I will be put to shame,

but with all boldness,

as always, even now,

Christ shall be magnified in my body,

whether through life or through death

21 for to me to live is Christ and to die is gain.

This is expressed in the song by "All things are his, yes, life and death."

Also "A boundless life in Him there is" when we are free from the fear of death as Paul says in:

Phil 1:28 In nothing being frightened by the opposers,

which is to them a proof of their destruction,

but of your salvation, and that from God.

----------

I prefer the original last line of the song, as that is what enables the boundless life.

Also, the original stanza 1, last line, says "In Christ he reaches home." I prefer that original also because it soberly refers to the death spoken of 3 lines before.


Cody Enderli

San Marcos, TX, United States

All things are His, both life and death!


Andrea

Tacoma, WA, United States

Striking the holy bargain! So many voices reaching the heavens, Memorial Day 2019


Tim Ou

Austin, Texas, United States

To be our Lord's alone.


William Jeng

Irvine, CA, United States

Never speak of sacrifice, a privilege untold!

I really enjoyed this past month that the principle of praising the Lord is a sacrifice of praises, or offering of praises. A sacrifice entails a loss, and what the Lord desires from us is actually to praise Him in our worst situations!! This is genuine praise!!


JT

Los Angeles, CA, United States

O never speak of sacrifice, a privilege untold!


Vincent Okoro

Lagos, Nigeria

Lord Jesus I love You and pray Lord that You make me one who is willing to live to You.


Rey Bulahan

Iloilo City, Iloilo, Philippines

Praise the Lord! Everything is for the Lord, even our life. Amen.


Eunice Garcia

NY, United States

"I am the Lord's..." Praise the Lord for His purpose and move in which we have been included. I'm enjoying that the church life is wonderful but we need to go on to experience the Body life... the reality of the Body for the building up of the Body of Christ. I'm sure glad that I am the Lord's but also I'm encouraged to realize God's goal is the Body built up. O dear Lord, take the steps to usher us all who are in Your recovery to experience the Body life for Your sweet rest and satisfaction... We love You dear Lord Jesus. Amen...

The young people who recently consecrated themselves in Taiwan became very released in singing Hymns, #473. This is a very good hymn. The utterances in it indicate that the writer experienced something deep concerning consecration:

The first stanza of Hymns, #473 says, "No mortal tongue can e'er describe / The freedom of the soul, / When passed beyond all earthly bribe/ To God's complete control." Stanza 3 says, "Arise! The holy bargain strike—/ The fragment for the whole—/ All men and all events alike / Must serve the ransomed soul. / All things are yours when you are His, / And He and you are one; / A boundless life in Him there is, / Whence doubt and fear are gone," Hebrews 11:26 tells us that Moses considered the reproach of the Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt. Comparing the two, Moses gave up everything of Egypt (vv. 24-25). In Matthew 16:26 the Lord said, "What shall a man be profited if he gains the whole world, but forfeits his soul-life? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul-life?" The Lord's words are in our ears and our hearts; they are not empty words. Verse 27 says, "The Son of Man is to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will repay each man according to his doings," Our soul will receive discipline when the millennial kingdom comes if we have sold ourselves to the world, although as saved ones, we will be spared from eternal perdition. We will not only Jose the blessing in the kingdom, but we will also weep and gnash our teeth in the outer darkness. We should fear the Lord and His word; these words will be fulfilled in the future. We cannot appreciate only words such as "God so loved the world" (John 3:16). The Lord's Word also tells us that it is not worthwhile for a man to gain the whole world but forfeit his soul-life.

Today Christians are befuddled, but we all will be required to give an account of our human life. I would be doing the saints an injustice if I did not tel1 the truth regarding this. Every saint can live a life of contacting the Lord when he wakes up in the morning and then have a life of living Christ the entire day, preaching the gospel to bring unbelievers to salvation whenever he has time or whenever he meets others, and then meeting together with them after they are saved.

The young saints in Taiwan have much expectation concerning the way of full-time service. Immediately after their graduation, many left their whole world with their future to come this way. They were encouraged by Hymns, #473, which says, "Arise! the holy bargain strike—/ The fragment for the whole," However, the "whole" is mainly a long tunnel. The entrance is very attractive, but once they are in the tunnel, some may want to get out. Nevertheless, there is no way out. I told the young saints, "we are not cheating you. We are telling you the truth about where you are. You are now in the long tunnel of Christ's death."

To move for the Lord involves a certain cost. Moving involves not only our jobs, our businesses, our homes, our families, our schooling, and other matters but also the paying of a price. We must consider what we are on the earth for. We are here not for our job, schooling, or home but for the Lord's recovery. Therefore, it is worthwhile to pay the price to move.

The price we pay by migrating cannot compare with the Christ we will gain. When you pay one hundred dollars in order to buy a diamond that is worth one thousand dollars, you do not feel that you are paying too high a price. Likewise, if we pay the price to move for the Lord's present testimony, we will gain the unsearchably rich Christ as our everything. We may say that this is to strike a "holy bargain" (Hymns, #473).

The day of the Lord's coming back is approaching. Since the day of His return is very close, we should not waste our time seeking individualistic spirituality. Instead, we should enter into the flow of the Body of Christ. It is worthwhile to enter into this flow. By entering into the Lord's flow, we will gain Christ as our everything. Everything depends on His flow. We should not worry about our future, for it is in the Lord's hands. If we enter into His flow, He will take care of our future.

Number 473 in Hymns starts on a very basic level by encouraging us to be persons who are absolutely for God. This is good, but it is elementary. However, this hymn advances to a much higher level with a line in the third stanza which says, "He and you are one." How marvelous that we, fallen human beings, can be one with the Lord! Such a thought is surely very high. Now we need to see something even higher—that as God-men we have the divine right to participate in God's divinity.

The phrase participate in means not only to partake of but to partake of for enjoyment. It indicates that we possess something and that we enjoy what we possess. We, the God-men, have the divine right to participate not in heaven but in God's divinity. We all need to realize that we can participate in God's divinity, that is, participate in God.

We human beings were created by God for this purpose. Man was created in God's image and after His likeness (Gen. 1:26). We were created not in man's image and after man's likeness but in God's image and after God's likeness. Thus, human beings have the image and likeness of God. However, at the time of creation, man did not have God's life. But now as God-men, those who have been born of God to be children of God, we have the right to participate in what God is and even to become God in life, in nature, and in expression but not in the Godhead.

It is said that the writer of this hymn is Catherine Booth-Clibborn, the daughter of the founder of the Salvation Army.

Hymn 473 in our hymnal is wonderful. When I went back to Taiwan in October of 1984, this hymn was so sweet. We could not stop the singing of this hymn, and it stirred up many hearts. I like every line except for the last one, so we can replace "Whence doubt and fear are gone" with "And kingdom yet to come." Verse 3 refers to the holy bargain, the fragment for the whole. When we sacrifice a fragment to the Lord, we gain the whole earth! When we serve Him, everyone and everything serve us—"All men and all events alike must serve the ransomed soul" (verse 3). We all need to speak and sing this hymn again and again.

Moses esteemed the reproach of the Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt (Heb. 11:26). He made an estimation and reckoned that no matter how noble and precious the treasures of this world are, they cannot be compared with Christ. The last stanza of Hymn #473, says, Arise! the holy bargain strike—The fragment for the whole—All men and all events alike Must serve the ransomed soul. All things are yours when you are His, And He and you are one; A boundless life in Him there is, Whence doubt and fear are gone.

I hope all the working brothers and sisters would have an esteeming and would consider what is noble and what is base. I made such an esteeming sixty years ago. At that time, I was still young and was as one charging on a great and tall horse into the world, ready to make gains. It seemed as if the Lord just took one look at me, and I fell from my horse. When I fell down, I began to reckon, "Should I choose the world, or should I choose Christ?" In the end, I was very clear that Christ is the best. From that day on, I chose to have Christ.

Instrumental (Guitar)