Wednesday, July 26, 2006

And Can It Be That I Should Gain

Charles Wesley was another prolific hymnwriter, and to me, this one has got to be his best song. It seems there are several versions out there. Our previous church hymnal had stanzas 1, 3, and 4 - and I was sadly disappointed when we purchased new hymnals with stanza 6 (rather than the third one, which was my favourite), with shortened verses (the last two lines were removed from each stanza and the chorus sung twice instead).

And Can It Be That I Should Gain
(Lyrics: Charles Wesley; Music: Thomas Campbell)

1) And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Saviour’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

Chorus:
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

2) ’Tis mystery all: th’Immortal dies:
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.

3) He left His Father’s throne above
So free, so infinite His grace;
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race;
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!

4) Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray,
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

5) Still the small inward voice I hear,
That whispers all my sins forgiven;
Still the atoning blood is near,
That quenched the wrath of hostile Heaven.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.

6) No condemnation now I dread;
I am my Lord's, and He is mine;
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine;
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

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