Track 8 — All Consuming Fire
It’s not often we sing hymns about God’s wrath, but Scripture has much to say about this glorious attribute. We must grasp the Truth of God’s righteous wrath against sin in order to appreciate the mercy and grace He shows toward sinners. Shai Linne teaches this concept so well in this album! This track opens with a clip of John Piper, taken from an excellent sermon delivered on September 2, 2001 (which you can read and/or listen to here) . In it, Piper defines sin as a rejection of each of God’s attributes, listing them in order — one of the best descriptions of sin I’ve ever heard.
I also love what Linne has done here, musically and thematically. The contrast between the previous track (“Lord of Patience”) is striking; this captures the incredibly shocking and seemingly contradictory statement that God makes of himself in Exodus 34:6-7: How can God be “gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love… forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin” yet also be the God “who will by no means clear the guilty“? Only in the cross can we make sense of this. This track is the one that gets stuck in my head most easily… especially helpful and sobering given the prophetic nature of the song’s ending, in which Linne repeatedly reminds us: “God’s wrath is coming! God’s wrath is coming! All the wicked will be punished at the final judgment!“
Favorite lyric: “No weeping or apologies, no sneakiness or bribery / will keep the Lord from honoring His Law and its demands“
Track 9 — Perfect Love (featuring Monielle)
Here Shai Linne inserts a track that helps us reconcile God’s mercy with His wrath by showing more fully how God is love, and contains perfect love within Himself. If we can’t understand how mercy and wrath go together, it’s because we can’t comprehend God in His fullness. The lyrics ask “how could God’s love be extended to men corrupted with sin?“, and then direct us to consider that it is because of God’s love for the world that He restrains His wrath, but it is because of His greater love for Himself that He will not delay judgment forever.
Favorite lyrics: “They say, ‘If God is love, what’s eternal torment for?’ / Well, He loves the world for sure, but He loves His glory more!“
Track 10 — Faithful God (featuring Chris Cobbins and Sovereign Grace Kids)
This track expounds on God’s faithfulness, both to save and to judge. Like “Lord of Patience”, it takes the form of a prayer. This is also the clearest proclamation of the gospel on the album… this song will preach! Around the start of the year, I’m going to teach this song to my 4th-6th grade children’s choir, and Lord willing (i.e. – if some of my boys can overcome the Tennessee drawl and get the verses out fast enough!) we’ll perform this for our congregation sometime in the Spring. Should be fun!
Favorite lyrics: “When we believed you were faithful to save us / And that means you’ll be faithful to change us / And the Spirit of Jesus will keep us ’til / You make us holy and blameless”
Track 11 — Judge of All the Earth (featuring Sovereign Grace Kids)
After two clarifying tracks, Linne resumes the conversation of God’s justice. Because God is just, He MUST judge ALL sin. We can trust His judgment; He WILL do right. I absolutely love the lyrics to this one, and hope you’ll follow along with them as you listen to this one, which you can hear on this page.
Favorite lyric: “God is never under obligation to be gracious / See, justice and mercy are two separate categories / And God is the one who chooses which way He’ll have His glory“
Track 12 — The Jealous One (featuring J.R.)
Easily the most intense track on the album, “The Jealous One” depicts a husband walking in to discover his wife in the act of adultery. We have so little understanding of how God’s jealousy is a good thing. It protects us by acting against the evil that seduces us; thanks be to God that His ways are not our ways, though! If He was like me, I wouldn’t stand a chance. I’d be struck down for my idolatry and faithlessness, but instead, God “took out His jealous anger on His Son.“
Several favorite lines in this one: “The God of the Bible who invites our trust / Must be understood to be nothing like us / Most of the time human jealousy will hurt you / But when it comes to God, His jealousy is a virtue“… “God’s jealousy is frightful, yet it’s delightful and good, too / I couldn’t think of much worse if I tried / than a dude who smirks if you flirt with His bride / So tell me, what kind of God would He be / If He wasn’t bothered to see idolatry?“
Track 13 — The Omnis (featuring Andy Mineo, Giano, & Omri)
God ends the description of His character in Exodus 33 & 34 with the declaration that His very name is “Jealous” (El Qanna), and so the previous track was the final one in the sequence taken from that passage. However, no listing of the attributes of God would be complete without the “Omnis” (omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent), so this one got included. Lyrically it’s okay, but it’s my least favorite on the album.
Favorite lyric: “His power cannot be compared / Exhaustive knowledge none can share / At all times everywhere / God is amazing“
Track 14 — Self-Sufficiency (by Timothy Brindle)
Like the track before, this is a stand-alone that highlights another of God’s glorious attributes. This is the only song on the album not written and performed by Shai Linne. Though his style and delivery is different, the heart is the same. I’m glad it was included!
Favorite lyric: “So trade Him your death for His immortality / The death of death in the death of Christ / Now we live with Him in resurrection life / Now we’re righteous because Christ was crushed / The Holy Spirit is Christ’s life in us“
Track 15 — Triune Praise (Remix)
“Triune Praise” was my first introduction to Shai Linne about three years ago. It fits in perfectly with the theme of this compilation, so a re-mixed (and even better, in my opinion) version was included here.
Favorite lyric: “You’re risen from the dead, I still can’t get this in my head / How the Judge could leave the bench and go to prison instead“
Below is the original version from his album “The Atonement“. Check out an audio preview of the new version.