Music Monday, “The Lord is My Salvation” by Keith and Kristyn Getty

Getty-Facing-Task

For today’s Music Monday I’d like to review one of the songs from the Getty’s new album, “Facing a Task Unfinished.” This song is entitled, “The Lord is My Salvation.” I was particularly excited about this album since I love the theological conviction and musicianship that the Getty’s have brought into the evangelical community. Their past works are a testimony unto themselves (i.e., “In Christ Alone” and “How Deep the Father’s Love for Us”).

Disclaimer: As always, these comments are more of my particular insights on the passage. Musically, I am by no means an expert, but can really only comment on what I appreciate and notice.

Theological Comment(s): The song echoes a common refrain found in the OT, “The Lord is my salvation.” This of course, is not isolated from NT saints. The overall appreciation I have in this song is how the lyrics are simple yet profoundly thought provoking. The lyrics are also very poetic, yet the imagery does not cloud the message. There’s an art behind being artistically poetic and simultaneously clear. Often times poetry can be obscure and difficult to understand, yet the Getty’s excel in theological clarity and poetic expression.

The first verse is about God’s sovereign grace in salvation. It poetically depicts God’s grace redeeming man from a raging sea and bringing him to a place of security. This of course is done only by God’s sovereign kindness. The second verse speaks of God’s sustaining grace even in life’s most difficult times. It is realistic with the “uphill battle” that is Christian living and identifies God as the one who provides strength for believers to persevere.

The chorus then moves to exalt the character of God. God is incomparable, strong, faithful in love, redeemer, and victor. There is a lot of theology packed in these short phrases that ought to cause a massive rush of theology to run through the believer’s mind.

The fourth verse is also about the perseverance of the saint. It expresses trust in God’s Word and confidence that God will be faithful in present trial as he had been in past trials. The fifth verse shows his grace when life is unfavorable. The verse specifically speaks of being in loss and being in times of weakness. Yet, even such instances the believer can depend on the grace of God.

The sixth and final verse speaks of God’s salvation as it reaches beyond this lifetime. It highlights the reality of death and how God’s salvation will show itself in the glory of resurrection. It points believers to the big picture of God’s eternal plan of redemption and not merely earthly “redemption” from trouble, but eternal salvation from the curse of sin.

The bridge is a God-centered, Triune-God exalting expression. Simple, yet profound (classic Getty). The Lord’s salvation extends from the Triune-Godhead. Theologically, we know that God the Father sends the Son to accomplish redemption which is applied by the Spirit. Again, the lyrics spark rich theological reflection.

Musical Comment(s):The song has a consistent build throughout most of the song. The earlier verses are rather light and primarily feature the keyboard and light percussion. By the first verse the percussion picks up. The build continues into the third and fourth verses. The end of the fourth verse the percussion is carrying the rhythm in full effect. In the sixth and final verse there is an expected drop-off. The verse drops to just the keyboard and by verse’s end the entire band is back. The entire song hits a peak at the bridge which naturally is carried over when returning to the chorus.

I think my appeal to this song is its playability in congregational worship. It’s no secret that the Getty’s like the Irish flavor as they often feature a violin (or I guess a “fiddle”) or bag pipes; but this song doesn’t necessarily include those instruments. This makes the song very playable for congregational worship.

Recommendation(s): I recommend this song primarily for congregational worship. It is simple enough for small churches (like the one I attend, or even smaller churches) to master and play on a consistent basis. Because it has a general theme of exalting God for His saving work it can always be worked into any set for corporate worship. The melody is also simple to grasp for congregational purposes. The song is also useful in personal meditation and more on the soothing end of the spectrum (don’t look to add this to your jogging/workout playlist).

Video Link: The first video is from the album. The second video is a live performance.

Lyrics:

The grace of God has reached for me
And pulled me from the raging sea
And I am safe on this solid ground
The Lord is my salvation

I will not fear when darkness falls
His strength will help me scale these walls
I’ll see the dawn of the rising sun
The Lord is my salvation

CHORUS
Who is like the Lord our God?
Strong to save, faithful in love
My debt is paid and the vict’ry won
The Lord is my salvation

My hope is hidden in the Lord
He flow’rs each promise of His Word
When winter fades I know spring will come
The Lord is my salvation

In times of waiting, times of need
When I know loss, when I am weak
I know His grace will renew these days
The Lord is my salvation

CHORUS

And when I reach my final day
He will not leave me in the grave
But I will rise,
He will call me home
The Lord is my salvation

CHORUS

Glory be to God the Father
Glory be to God the Son
Glory be to God the Spirit
The Lord is our salvation

CHORUS

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