"Songs of deliverance"

THE Scriptures record a number of instances of people being delivered from trying and even perilous circumstances, through singing spiritual songs. Some of us who were so fortunate as to grow up in homes where the Bible was read aloud daily, will recall the keen interest with which we listened as children to the reading of the fall of the wall of Jericho before the shouting and trumpets of the children of Israel, enabling them to walk straight into the city as the Lord had promised them. Prison doors opened and bands were loosed when Paul and Silas prayed and sang praises to God. Then there is the account of King Jehoshaphat, who led his followers forth with praise and singing to the Lord, and found that, his enemies having destroyed one another, it was not necessary for him to defend himself.

Such instances as these the Psalmist must have had in thought when he sang, "Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance." What are these "songs of deliverance"? What is this music before which obstacles fall and hindering walls crumble? A study of our Leader's address on the subject "Obedience," beginning on page 116 of "Miscellaneous Writings," makes it clear that deliverance comes through obedience to divine Principle. She begins her address thus: "This question, ever nearest to my heart, is to-day uppermost: Are we filling the measures of life's music aright, emphasizing its grand strains, swelling the harmony of being with tones whence come glad echoes? As crescendo and diminuendo accent music, so the varied strains of human chords express life's loss or gain,—loss of the pleasures and pains and pride of life: gain of its sweet concord, the courage of honest convictions, and final obedience to spiritual law."

In art, music, architecture, and the various physical sciences, people are quick to recognize that only through obedience to law can harmony be attained; yet how slow are many to realize that this is true also in regard to life itself, to the Science of being! Indeed, how slow is humanity to accept the existence of spiritual law! Yet to David and Paul and other Scriptural writers spiritual law seemed natural and inevitable—an outstanding fact of creation. The Psalmist repeatedly chanted his love for God's law, his delight in meditating upon and obeying it, declaring it to be in his heart; while Paul pronounced the law to be holy, spiritual, good, his delight, epitomizing it thus: "All the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." And to the Apostle James the demands of Spirit comprised "the perfect law of liberty."

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Study Essential to Progress
January 21, 1928

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