In the lead up to Easter I am simply going to ask you to mediate upon the words of a glorious hymn. ………………..Isaac Watt’s ‘When I survey’ has been sung for generations and I would suggest that someone will still be singing it when the Lord returns. However, the song was extremely controversial in its day. It was typical that churches would shun music and simply sing the words of psalms without accompaniment. Watts however, adopted a contemporary style and sought to write Biblical truths, often to well-known tunes in order to engage the believers mind as well as to stir their affections. The prolific hymn writer, Charles Wesley (who was born the year that the hymn was first published, 1707), said of it that he would ‘trade every song he had written if he could have only written this one’.
I encourage you, not only to read it, but to feed upon it! I include it below including the often omitted fourth verse.
When I survey the wondrous cross, On which the Prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss, And pour contempt on all my pride.
Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast, Save in the death of Christ my God!
All the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to His blood.
See from His head, His hands, His feet, Sorrow and love flow mingled down! Did e’er such love and sorrow meet, Or thorns compose so rich a crown?
His dying crimson, like a robe, Spreads o’er His body on the tree;
Then I am dead to all the globe, And all the globe is dead to me.
Were the whole realm of nature mine, That were a present far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all.