AUTHOR’S NOTE: this may come off as all about me. Certainly not intended. And I really think a perceptive reader can see Jesus providing some input.
This may be my first song where Jesus Christ is the subject from beginning to end. Most of my songs are about God. Jesus gets mentioned, or has a supporting role, but does not saturate the lyrics as in “Head of The Church”.
My own self-analysis concludes that, up until now, I’ve severely under-rated what Jesus does for us.
THE BIRTH: THE MUSIC CAME FIRST
What I usually do when this happens is find the ‘catchiest’ music hook, and try different words with it. Turns out that the words “Christ Jesus” matched the catchiest music hook nicely. The trouble, though, was that I didn’t want to write a song using common cliches I’ve heard in other songs about Jesus.
So I was kinda stumped.
IN THE MEANTIME…
Something else was going on simultaneously with the writing of this song. I was doing some research on the word “Yahweh”. I had seen some of my Christian Facebook friends use it, when talking about the word LORD in the Old Testament. But nothing had hit my heart about changing to the word “Yahweh”. So I thought a little research was in order.
In my research, I came across this online article:
GOD’S NAMESAKE IN ACTION
The articles deals with redemptive titles of Yahweh. Eight titles are given special attention in the article. And there may be only eight in the Bible. I’m not sure. But I am sure that the total of these redemptive titles encompass every function Yahweh would ever need to do for His believers.
Some key excerpts from the article:
“…as God had said to Moses, ‘…I will be what I will be…’ (Exodus 3:14). The one and Only True God was everything He needed to be for His people Israel, and in the process established the paradigm for exercising the lordship that He would later give to His Son to fulfill.”
“Jesus Christ represents a kind of synopsis of all God has done for His people throughout the ages. We will look at how, in both his earthly ministry and in his exalted ministry as Lord, Jesus embodies all the chief attributes of Yahweh given in the Old Testament.”
THE GROWTH: THE SUBJECT MATTER ARRIVES
From the same article:
“What we will see in this chapter is that as the exalted Lord with his delegated authority, Jesus Christ is now performing all these ‘Yahweh functions’ for God’s people. After a brief study of the context in which each of these descriptive titles are found, we will expound upon how Jesus Christ as Lord is now fulfilling each of these particular functions. Keep in mind as you are reading that you can count on the Lord Jesus Christ, who is invested with all authority as the Head of the Church, to perform these functions for you day by day.”
I knew Jesus Christ, as head of the church, was busy. But I thought his role was limited, and Yahweh took care of everything else. I didn’t know all those other responsibilities came with being head of the church.
This got to be exciting to think about, and gave me plenty of material for lyrics. My intent was that each of the eight redemptive functions would get attention.
The following has (1) the eight redemptive functions (in order from the article), (2) the time stamp of where they appear in the song, and (3) key lyrics involved.
1- “Yahweh Who Provides”
“Sees where you are and what you need.
Provides it all at the perfect speed.”
2- “Yahweh Who Heals”
“The torture the devil was dealing
Ended up buying our healing.”
3- “Yahweh My Banner [protector]“
“He’s the biggest big brother in Creation.”
4- “Yahweh Who Sanctifies [for His Service]“
“He’ll send some family matters your way.”
5- “Yahweh Our Peace”
“No matter the fury the devil may release,
Christ Jesus tells us firmly, “I’m your peace.”
6- “Yahweh Our Righteousness”
“Took you and me who were ‘slightly’ flawed,
And stood us upright before his God.”
7- “Yahweh Is Present”
“He does not save you then walk away.
You’re too important. He’s gonna stay.”
8- “Yahweh My Shepherd”
0:50, 2:05 and 2:35
“He is the shepherd, head of the church,
Organizing a massive search.”
A SMALL DILEMMA WHILE WRITING LYRICS
There’s a line in the song that goes: “Christ Jesus… stood us upright before his God.” (# 6 in the chart above)
I contemplated this variation: “Christ Jesus…stood us upright before our God.”
One part of me liked the second version as it seemed to reinforce our relationship with God.
But I opted for the first variation after considering Ephesians 2:12, where we, as Gentiles, were ” …without God in the world.”
I felt the starkness of our need, depicted in Ephesians 2:12, might actually reinforce our current relationship with God EVEN MORE than the second variation.
The flaw in the second variation is that it sounds like we (I’m still talking to us former Gentiles) always had SOME form of relationship with God.
Ephesians 2:12 makes it clear there was no such relationship, prior to the work of Jesus Christ.
THE FLESH IS STILL ‘SLIGHTLY’ FLAWED
In April, 2012, I wrote a song called IDEAL FATHER . In it, I concentrated on only three functions (protection, prosperity [provision] and healing). I was assuming those three pretty well covered (as quoted earlier) “everything He needed to be for His people…”
I skipped over things like sanctification, peace, righteousness, presence, and shepherd.
It actually makes me chuckle to think that I thought I had a grasp of the situation, and turned out to not even have half a grasp.
Love that correction and growth.