Worship in the Language of Heaven

  • Friday, March 18, 2011

  • We speak the “language of heaven” here! Gothenburg. 1st B. Pride and passion. Not JUST “Baptist” but “FIRST Baptist”! Officially incorporated two years BEFORE the city of Gothenburg, Nebraska was officially incorporated. And Swedish. Very Swedish. The hymns that were sung? In Swedish. The announcements that were made? In Swedish. The proclamation of the Word? You guessed it. The language of heaven!

    But a serious integration began to take place. Marriage. Boy meets girl. Girl likes boy. Boy asks girl to marry. Weddings. And suddenly it wasn’t quite so Swedish anymore. German. German and Swedish. Integration. And a battle to maintain the language of heaven. Would the services be continued in Swedish? Perhaps they ought to be conducted now in German! ENGLISH!?!? Why in the world would the hymns, announcements AND the preaching be in ENGLISH?!? Who can worship the Living God in ENGLISH?!? Gone was the “language of heaven”.

    The 1930s’ “compromise” to English preserved the historic congregation. They were, after-all, the FIRST Baptist Church! The “language of worship” became the English language, which was soon labeled, “THE language of Heaven”.

    “And behold, a great multitude, which no one could count, from every nation and tribe and peoples and tongue, standing before the Throne…saying, ‘Salvation to our God who sits on the Throne, and to the Lamb!’” Revelation 7

    English, with a heavy Scandinavian accent and the audible undertones of German.  1st B of G-burg. Worship in the language of heaven!

    Join with us this Sunday as we welcome the Harvest Field Team from Stockholm, Sweden and together, with a bit of Swedish, a whole lot of English, and one heart and voice, worship the Lord our God. Worship in the languages of heaven! 

    See you Sunday, Church!
    Pastor Tom


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