SEE THE CHRIST
(Text and Tune by Paul Keew and Brian Pinner, from Philippians 2:5-11)
See the Christ, the Son divine,
One with God before all time,
Lay aside His robe of light,
Clutching not His equal right.
See Him as a servant born,
Taking on our human form.
Make His humble mind your own;
Serve your brothers here below.
See the Christ, the Son of Man,
In obedience to God’s plan,
Take for us a sinner’s death,
Gasping out His final breath.
See Him on the cross of blood,
Proving there His love for God.
Trust the Father with your life;
He will turn all wrongs to right.
See the Christ, the Son, alive,
In His radiant place above,
Now exalted, raised on high,
Reigning from the Father’s side.
See Him take the greatest name:
Lord of All, by God proclaimed.
Hail Him King, and bow the knee
For the Father’s glory.
Copyright © 2012 Watchsong (admin. Church Works Media). All rights reserved.
(by Paul Keew)
I started work on turning Philippians 2:5-11 into a metered poem several years before finishing this hymn. Looking for another project on which to collaborate with my friend Brian Pinner, I dusted off my first attempt (which was pretty shabby), and we got to work.
The three stanzas each deal with one of the three stages of Christ’s work outlined in the Philippians passage: his incarnation, his humiliation or suffering, and his exaltation. Each stanza begins with an exhortation to look on Christ with awe and reverence through each stage, and each ends with a call to take action based on what we have witnessed.
Some tunes come easily, but this one went through many iterations before we finished. One unique feature is the deceptive cadence in the middle which launches you into the second half of each stanza.