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God before the world's foundation
Chose the Church in Christ the Son,
That the Church might share the sonship,
Holy, blameless, with Him one;
That the Church be His possession
With the Spirit as the seal,
Of our heritage the earnest
While His Son He does reveal.
To the throne Christ has ascended,
Far above all rule and power;
God has made Him Head o'er all things
To the Church, His Body here.
All in He ever filleth,
And His fulness is expressed
Through the Church, which is His Body
And His image manifests.
We, once dead in our offences,
Walking in the worldly course,
Lusts of flesh and mind fulfilling,
Satan and his hosts their source,
God with Christ has resurrected,
Seated in the heavenlies;
We, His masterpiece, created
In Christ Jesus, Him to please.
Jews and Gentiles are one body —
God His myst'ry has made known —
On apostles, prophets founded,
Jesus Christ the cornerstone;
We in Him are built together
For God's dwelling manifest,
Fitly framed by God the Spirit
For His pleasure and His rest.
In eternal ages purposed
That His wisdom be made known,
Was the Church, His hidden myst'ry,
Where the Son could make His home;
That the saints may all in spirit
Apprehend His boundlessness,
Know His love which passes knowledge,
All God's fulness to possess.
One in body, hope, and Spirit,
One in faith, one Lord, the Son,
One baptizing, with one Father,
That the Church may thus be one;
Christ to know in all His fulness,
Unto manhood be matured,
Ne'er by winds of doctrine carried,
Nor by cunning men allured.
Many gifts the Lord has given,
That His Body He may build,
That the saints may be perfected
And their ministry fulfilled.
Thus we must put off the old man
That we may put on the new;
Thus, renewed in mind and spirit,
We will bear God's image true.
Christ in love Himself has given
That the Church be sanctified,
Without blemish, spot, or wrinkle,
To become His glorious bride.
He does nourish her and cherish
As a man his body treats;
He and she become one body —
Thus the myst'ry very great.
Body, house, new man the Church is,
Bride, and temple, and yet more:
She's the army too which fighteth
All God's foe to triumph o'er.
She is clothed with all God's armor,
In His mighty strength is strong,
Standing in the Lord, resisting,
With all prayers she fighteth on.
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