Alas! and Did my Savior Bleed

[In] the autumn of 1850…re­viv­al meet­ings were be­ing held in the Thir­ti­eth Street Meth­od­ist Church [, New York Ci­ty]. Some of us went down ev­ery ev­en­ing; and, on two oc­ca­sions, I sought peace at the at­lar [sic], but did not find the joy I craved, un­til one ev­en­ing, No­vem­ber 20, 1850, it seemed to me that the light must in­deed come then or ne­ver; and so I arose and went to the al­tar alone. A­fter a prayer was of­fered, they be­gan to sing the grand old con­se­cra­tion hymn, “Alas, and did my Sav­iour bleed, And did my Sov­er­eign die?” And when they reached the third line of the fourth [sic] stan­za, “Here Lord, I give my­self away,” my very soul was flood­ed with a ce­les­ti­al light. I sprang to my feet, shout­ing “hal­le­lu­jah,” and then for the first time I real­ized that I had been try­ing to hold the world in one hand and the Lord in the other.

Crosby, p. 24


 

Alas! and did my Savior bleed
And did my Sovereign die?
Would He devote that sacred head
For such a worm as I?

Refrain

At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,
And the burden of my heart rolled away,
It was there by faith I received my sight,
And now I am happy all the day!

Thy body slain, sweet Jesus, Thine—
And bathed in its own blood—
While the firm mark of wrath divine,
His Soul in anguish stood.

Was it for crimes that I had done
He groaned upon the tree?
Amazing pity! grace unknown!
And love beyond degree!

Well might the sun in darkness hide
And shut his glories in,
When Christ, the mighty Maker died,
For man the creature’s sin.

Thus might I hide my blushing face
While His dear cross appears,
Dissolve my heart in thankfulness,
And melt my eyes to tears.

But drops of grief can ne’er repay
The debt of love I owe:
Here, Lord, I give my self away
’Tis all that I can do.

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