O Sacred Head, Now Wounded
O sacred head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down,
now scornfully surrounded with thorns, thine only crown;
O sacred head, what glory, what bliss till now was thine!
Yet, though despised and gory, I joy to call thee mine.
How pale thou art with anguish, with sore abuse and scorn;
how does thy face now languish, which once was bright as morn!
Thy grief and bitter passion were all for sinners' gain;
mine, mine was the transgression, but thine the deadly pain.
What language shall I borrow to thank thee, dearest friend,
for this thy dying sorrow, thy pity without end?
Oh, make me thine forever, and should I fainting be,
Lord, let me never, never outlive my love to thee.
Lord, be my consolation; shield me when I must die;
remind me of thy passion when my last hour draws nigh.
These eyes, new faith receiving, from thee shall never move;
for all who die believing die safely in thy love.
Text: Paul Gerhardt, 1607-1676,
based on Arnulf of Louvain, d. 1250;
Look to Jesus, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God (Heb 12.2).