“I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues – last, because with them God’s wrath is completed. And I saw what looked like a sea of glass mixed with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and his image and over the number of his name. They held harps given them by God and sang the song of Moses, the Servant of God and the song of the Lamb:
Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty.
Just and true are your ways King of the ages.
Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to your name?
For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you,
for your righteousness acts have been revealed.” – Rev. 15:1-4 (NIV)
As we have been reflecting on the songs of scripture and the role of the singers in the people of God, I hope we have begun to get a sense of the biblical and theological foundations for the ministry of Canto Deo. In this song, the song of Moses and the Lamb, we gain a deeper awareness of this song of heaven and how it informs our singing here and now.
The setting for this song is a sea of glass mingled with fire. The wrath of God is poured out in a time of great tribulation to persuade the worshippers of the beast to bow before the sovereign God. In the midst of this setting, a great chorus of believers, with harps in hand, joins in singing. Contextually, the juxtaposition of the song of Moses (Exodus 15) with the song of the Lamb (Rev. 15) indicates a song of deliverance which both the saints of the Old Testament and New Testament can sing. It is a medley of deliverance, in the Old Testament, from the bondage of Egypt; in the New Testament, from the bondage of the powers that oppose God.
The ‘Song of Moses and the Lamb’ is a song, sung by both Old and New Testament saints, which proclaims the greatness, majesty, power and dominion of God. It is a song which extols the mighty works of God on behalf of his people. It is a song which affirms the nature, character, and virtues of God as he acts in salvation history. It is, in the end, a song of triumph, that the plans and purposes of God will be fully realized one day and all nations will worship God alone. This is of what Canto Deo should sing, now and always. Praise be to God!
Dr. Keith Wells is the Chaplain for Canto Deo and also a Professor at Denver Seminary.