Then, Oh Then

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“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” (1 John 3:1-2)

The hymn “Praise the Savior, Ye Who Know Him” was written in the more formal early 1800s, yet it has an almost whimsical approach to its clever rhymes and cadence. A delight to sing, one might at first think it somewhat trivial, but a more careful look finds many rich insights into doctrinal truth. The final verse reflects the promise that one day “we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.”

Then we shall be where we would be,

Then we shall be what we should be;

Things which are not now, nor could be,

Soon shall be our own.

We can scarcely imagine the joys in store for us in Glory. The apostle Paul had similar difficulty, yet he prayed that we might “be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God” (Ephesians 3:18-19).

As we anticipate what is to come, we can rest in the certain knowledge that all is secure, for He has promised this. Ephesians concludes with this benediction: “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21). JDM

Click here for the sheet music for this hymn.