I’m becoming an old codger. Actually, that is redundant, as the Oxford American Dictionary defines a codger as an elderly man, especially one who is old-fashioned or eccentric. Gender aside, I do tend to cherish things from the “old days.” For instance, I love the “old” hymns. To be fair, maybe it’s not because I’m old-fashioned, but because so many of the old hymns have lyrics so biblical and rich in meaning. One of my favorite hymns is Immortal, Invisible God Only Wise (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sFpalb2sbM). That title comes straight from scripture: Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honor and glory for every and ever. Amen (1 Timothy 1:17, KJV). It’s a hymn of adoration and praise.
Another scriptural reference in the first verse of the hymn is to God as the “Ancient of Days.” That term is used in the Bible only in Daniel, chapter 7. What does that name mean? It conjures up thoughts of a God who is eternal, immutable, without beginning or end, who calls Himself I AM WHO I AM (Exodus 3:14). The God who IS, not who was or will be, but who eternally IS. As one commentary I read noted, the title implies the existence of God before the existence of days, referencing the “eternality” of God.
Many other scriptures support this image. Micah 5:2 reads “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times” (NIV). Psalm 90:2 proclaims “Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.” And Isaiah 43:11-13 asserts “I, even I, am the Lord, and apart from me there is no savior. I have revealed and saved and proclaimed—I, and not some foreign god among you. You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “that I am God. Yes, and from ancient days I am he. No one can deliver out of my hand. When I act, who can reverse it?”
Of course, I do love many of the new hymns/praise songs, also. One contemporary song called Ancient of Days (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPpGphzScjA ) simply defines the “Ancient of Days” as One who is Lord overall, with “none above Him, none before Him, all of time in His hands, for His throne, it shall remain and ever stand. All the power, all the glory, I will trust in His name, for my God is the Ancient of Days.” This song echoes the most reassuring fact I can think of: God IS on the throne and has all things under His control. He always has, from before time, and always will. Praise God.