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Appreciating Our Lutheran Hymns

He is Arisen! Glorious Word!

An Easter Hymn

#189 in The Lutheran Hymnal

You’ve heard it said: “Pressure makes diamonds.” The Lord speaks in similar fashion through Peter’s pen: “You are kept by the power of God . . . In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Pet. 1:5-7).

How true it is that in so many instances God uses what humanly speaking is a tragedy to produce tremendous blessings for His people!

We have such an instance in the Danish woman, Birgitte Katerine Boye. Married at the age of 21, she mothered four children in the next five years. And then, with her children between the ages of 5 and 10, her husband’s position as forester for the king was abolished, and after a year’s illness he died. During this trying time Birgitte started writing hymns for a collection later to be called Guldberg’s Hymnal.

One of those hymns is this powerful Easter hymn, in which she penned the assurance that Jesus’ resurrection gave her and every believer in the face of death. His resurrection proves that my sins are forgiven; there is now peace with God: “Now reconciled is God, my Lord; The gates of heaven are open.”

And now that He is alive, we will live also: “Christ victorious Riseth Glorious, Life he giveth!”

“He is arisen! Glorious Word!”

–Pastor Paul Krause