Their nails were freshly driven, their hatred clearly shown,
when, “Let them be forgiven,” was heard at heaven’s throne.
Your enemies, O Jesus, you loved beyond degree,
a love so pure and precious it even pardoned me.
On you, my King, depending, I’m rid of all my sins!
My final day here ending, my first in heav’n begins.
As you have truly spoken, in paradise I’ll be,
with you in bliss unbroken—you will remember me.
A Savior like no other, all self-concern denied,
you served your grieving mother while you were crucified.
My sin had made me filthy, but you, the perfect child,
were designated guilty, and I am reconciled.
Condemned, cut off, forsaken, outside the Father’s care,
by terror overtaken, no ear would hear your prayer.
On you God’s wrath was vented, on you his fury fell,
when, on the cross tormented, you took my place in hell.
My Lord, in death’s dark valley, both soul and body drained,
one drink would help you rally what little strength remained
to raise your voice in vict’ry, to sound your foe’s defeat—
the highest point in hist’ry—my rescue was complete.
Though sin’s most lethal wages to me, O Christ, were due,
the guilt of all the ages came crashing down on you.
Most surely, “It is finished”—my debt is fully paid;
my joy is undiminished; my heart is unafraid.
My death will be triumphant no matter how I die;
Lord Jesus, in that instant escort my soul on high
into my Father’s keeping, all-blameless and all-blest,
like waking up from sleeping, his hands my place of rest.
From Christian Worship: Hymnal, hymn 436. Text: © 2021 Michael D. Schultz. Used by permission.
Hymn illustrations by Corissa Nelson.
Watch this hymn come to life as the illustrations are animated and WELS musicians perform each verse. One video is released each week during Lent.
Click to read all seven articles that feature Jesus’ final words from the cross that were published in the March 2022 issue of Forward in Christ.
Author: Michael D. Schultz
Volume 109, Number 03
Issue: March 2022