Rock of Hiding
“Rock of Ages cleft for me, let me hide myself in thee. Let the water and the blood from Thy wounded side which flowed, be of sin the double cure; save from wrath and make me pure.”
“Not the labors of my hands can fulfill thy law’s commands. Could my zeal no respite know, could my tears forever flow, all for sin could not atone. Thou must save, and thou alone.”
“Nothing in my hand I bring, simply to the cross I cling. Naked, come to Thee for dress, helpless, look to Thee for grace. Foul, I to the fountain fly, wash me, Savior, or I die.”
“While I draw this fleeting breath, when mine eyes shall close in death, when I soar to worlds unknown, see Thee on Thy judgment throne, Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee.”
This hymn has been kind of on the periphery of my knowledge until today, when I looked at how to do this topic. There is something I purposefully skimmed over in my F is for Face discussion that I want to revisit for a minute. In Exodus 33, God says in verse 21, “Here is a place by Me, and you shall stand on the rock. So it shall be, while My glory passes by, that I will put you in the cleft of the rock, and will cover you with My hand while I pass by. Then I will take away My hand, and you shall see My back; but My face shall not be seen.”
God hides Moses in the cleft of a rock to protect him from the full effect of His glory. Jesus is likened to a rock or stone many times in scripture (1 Cor 10:4, Ps 118:22, Isa 8:14). He is the stone that the builders rejected that has become the capstone (read Luke 20 for Jesus’ interpretation of that statement). I want to synthesize these two thoughts to make a statement and then move into a word picture I had from this concept. Just as God hid Moses in the cleft of a rock to protect him from the sheer otherness of His holiness, we also ought to be hidden in Christ as that double cure to save from wrath and make us pure.
“I looked and saw a rock growing out of the earth. It grew and matured in appearance to the form of a cross, glowing with radiant light. I knew the light I saw was the glory and majesty of God. Then a voice cried, ‘Broken witness, come to the Rock; Hide in the Rock.’ Then a man that looked like me but was blurry like from a dream came to the cross and hid behind it. The glow grew brighter still and the rock expanded further, almost as if it were being lifted up. The man stepped through the cross and became like the rock, both in appearance and in the glow of Its glorious majesty. So I looked and the figure that was me reflected the rock.”
Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in Thee. Let the water and the blood from Thy wounded side which flowed, be of sin the double cure; save from wrath and make me pure.