Wisdom Calls

Full Text

1 At the crossroads of deci sion
Wisdom calls to all and each:
“Come, my children, learn and listen—
heed the ways I seek to teach.”
Conscious thoughts or intuition
frame her words of grace and peace:
“Choose the pathway of the Lord.”

2 On the ash heap of disaster
“Where is God?” we cry and weep.
Friends are false and faith uncertain;
Wisdom seems beyond our reach.
Still she whispers from the whirlwind
of our pain and of our grief:
“Trust the goodness of the Lord.”

3 On a cross and in a manger
God’s compassion is made plain.
“Word made flesh” is God among us;
“He is risen” brings hope for pain.
“Come, you weary,” pleads the Savior;
Wisdom calls to us again:
“Cast your burdens on the Lord.”

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Scripture References

Further Reflections on Scripture References

The Call of Wisdom is expressed in Proverbs 1:20-33 and 8:11-36.
Note how Christ is called the “wisdom of God” in I Corinthians 1:18-31, especially verses 24 and 30.
Note the relationship of wisdom and the Holy Spirit in I Corinthians 2:6-10.

Confessions and Statements of Faith References

Further Reflections on Confessions and Statements of Faith References

Throughout all of history, God’s people proved to be unfaithful to him and yet God, in his mercy, was full of grace. These truths are expressed in Our World Belongs to God, paragraph 22: “When Israel spurned God’s love…God scattered them among the nations, yet kept a faithful remnant and promised them the Messiah…God promised to forgive their sins and give them a new heart and a new spirit, moving them to walk in his ways.”

Wisdom Calls

Tune Information

E♭ Major

Musical Suggestion

Piano accompaniment option:
Accompany the singing with a bell-like sound. Roll these notes up from the bottom, as if handbells are playing:
  • Left Hand: Eb-Bb 
  • Right Hand: Eb-F-Bb
For an introduction, do the above twice, pausing between each chord.
Roll the chord and sustain with the damper pedal during the pause between each sung phrase. 
— Diane Dykgraaf

Wisdom Calls

Hymn Story/Background

DIVINUM MYSTERIUM is a plainsong, or chant, associated with the “Divinum mysterium” text in manuscripts dating from the twelfth to fifteenth centuries. The tune was published in triple meter in Theodoricis Petri's Piae Cantiones (1582). Some hymnals retain the dance-like triple meter, while others keep the original unmeasured form of the chant.
— Bert Polman

Author Information

Carol Bechtel has served as professor of Old Testament at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan, since 1994. She is a graduate of Hope College and Western Theological Seminary, and she received her Ph.D. in Old Testament from Yale University. Bechtel preaches and teaches widely and is the author of several books, including Esther: A Commentary for Teaching and Preaching (Interpretation, WJK, 2002). She is a General Synod Professor of Theology in the Reformed Church in America and has served as president of the RCA’s General Synod (1998/1999) and as moderator of its General Synod Council (1999/2000). She lives in Holland, Michigan, with her husband, Tom Mullens, where they enjoy a growing group of children and grandchildren. Her interests include singing, cooking, gardening, and the Celtic harp. She served on the editorial committee for Psalms for All Seasons (2012) and for Lift Up Your Hearts (2013).
— Emily Brink

Composer Information

Paul G. Bunjes (b. September 27, 1914; d. June 27, 1998) was an organist, author, and organ designer. He wrote The Praetorius Organ (four volumes), numerous articles for periodicals, and was an accomplished composer and arranger. He was a major contributor to the Lutheran Book of Worship (1978) and Lutheran Worship (1982). Bunjes was Professor of Music at Concordia University for many years. 
— Laura de Jong
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