Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Lenten Meditation

Another Lenten hymn is posted below for a Lenten meditation.  (For better or for worse, it did not make the cut for Chrstian Worship from The Lutheran Hymnal.)  It is a Polish hymn that reflects on the crucifixion and death of our Lord. 

It is good for us to recall the brutal beatings, the intense sufferings, and the innocent death of our Lord Jesus Christ.  While many Christian churches today seem to want to bypass the sufferings and death of our Lord Jesus, it is foolish to do so.  This is the atonment.  There is no divine mercy for us apart from the atonement.  There is no resurrection without Jesus' death.  For as much as churches may talk about godly and righteous lives to be lived in thanksgiving to Jesus, we can have no godly life until our sinful flesh has been crucified.  Crucifixion always preceeds glory -- both for Jesus and for us.  Therefore, we preach Christ crucified.  That is where we find our comfort; for there is our atonement.

Jesus Christ, our Lord most holy,
   Lamb of God so pure and lowly,
Blameless, blameless, on the cross art offered,
   Sinless, sinless, for our sins hast suffered.

Weep now, all ye wretched creatures,
   As ye view His gracious features.
Jesus, Jesus, on the cross is dying,
   Nature, nature, in dark gloom is sighing.

Christ, His last word having spoken,
   Bows His head as life is broken.
Mourning, mourning, stands His mother weeping,
   Loved ones, loved ones, silent watch are keeping.

The great veil was torn asunder,
   Earth did quake mid roars of thunder,
Boulders, boulders, into bits were breaking;
   Sainted, sainted dead from death were waking.

At His side with spear was riven,
   Blood and water forth were given.
Jesus, Jesus, sinners’ only Savior,
   Mercy, mercy, grant to us forever.

          Jesus Christ, Our Lord Most Holy
          words by Michal Grodzki (ca. 1550)
          translated by John Bajus, 1939
          (#169, The Lutheran Hymnal © 1941)

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