BEHIND THE SONG WITH KEVIN DAVIS
#11 - "Shine" by Matt Redman
NRT contributor Kevin Davis continues his in-depth devotional series based on his favorite Christian songs.
 


"Shine" is my favorite song from Matt Redman’s album Beautiful News. The song is also featured on Passion's God Of This City live album. It seems the entire Passion album centers around this theme with other standout songs “We Shine” by Fee and “God Of This City” by Chris Tomlin. Another song based on this theme is “Shine Like The Stars” by Stellar Kart.

“Shine” by Matt Redman is based on Philippians 2:14-16: Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life—in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.

What an amazing reminder of how we are called to be a light for Jesus, everyday, “without complaining or arguing." Matt Redman is my favorite Christian songwriter and he has an amazing ability to bring scripture to life. From “The Heart of Worship”, “Better Is One Day” and “Blessed Be Your Name” to “You Never Let Go”, he always captures the Spirit of God’s Word. “Shine” is no exception as you can almost hear Paul singing to the Philippians these great words of encouragement.

Matt Redman says about the song "Shine:" “The song came into being as a response to the verse in Philippians 2 - which says that in this generation we, as the church, ’shine like stars in the universe’. If you know anything about stars, that’s a pretty amazing thought. Seeing them from such unfathomable distances away, we can be unaware of just how outrageous these stars are. Take the Sun as an example. They says it’s about 27 million degrees Fahrenheit in its unfathomably hot core. Or, check out the star Sirius. This one is about twice the mass and diameter of the sun, and 23 times as luminous. So when the bible tells us ‘we shine like stars’ in this generation, that’s some pretty intense stuff. What I love most about this verse though is how affirming it is. It doesn’t say ‘go and try your best and if you’re an expert at Christianity one day you might even shine’. No, it says ‘you DO shine’ - we already shine - even on our bad days. That’s good news for the lady who’s showing up at the office every day wondering if her being there really makes a difference. Or the guy at college living on campus and losing confidence in his ability to shine because of how full-on an environment it is. It’s so easy to lose our confidence in this area - and this verse is so helpful and encouraging. I’ll end with an old line from Charles Spurgeon, which sums it all up for me: “Never lose heart in the power of the gospel."

Lyrics to “Shine”:

Lord we have seen the rising sun, awakening the early dawn,
And we’re rising up to give You praise.
Lord we have seen the stars and moon, see how they shine,
They shine for You,
And You’re calling us to do the same.
So we rise up with a song, and we rise up with a cry
And we’re giving You our lives.

We will shine like stars in the universe,
Holding out Your truth in the darkest place.
We’ll be living for Your glory,
Jesus we’ll be living for Your glory.
We will burn so bright with Your praise O God,
And declare Your light to this broken world.
We’ll be living for Your glory,
Jesus we’ll be living for Your glory.

Like the sun so radiantly
Sending light for all to see,
Let your holy church arise
Exploding into life,
Like a supernova's light,
Set Your holy church on fire;
We will shine.


I love how Matt Redman interprets this scripture in a way that we can identify with and calls us to know the confidence of living in Christ. I often feel like a ‘dull’ person that isn’t showing God’s light in my life and it is very affirming to know that my life ‘shines’ for Christ, even on my bad days. This song helps me pray to live every day for God’s glory!

You can listen to the song here.

Kevin Davis is a long time fan of Christian music as well as, movies, TV shows and multiple PodCasts. He currently lives in Pennsylvania with his wife and three daughters.

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