Friday, April 2, 2010

Go To Dark Gethsemane

Good Friday
April 2, 2010

The Lord be with you

Go to dark Gethsemane,
All who feel the tempter’s pow’r;
Your Redeemer’s conflict see,
Watch with Him one bitter hour;
Turn not from His griefs away;
Learn from Jesus Christ to pray.

Follow to the judgment hall,
View the Lord of life arraigned;
Oh, the wormwood and the gall!
Oh, the pangs His soul sustained!
Shun not suff’ring, shame, or loss;
Learn from Him to bear the cross.

Calv’ry’s mournful mountain climb;
There, adoring at His feet,
Mark that miracle of time,
God’s own sacrifice complete.
“It is finished!” hear Him cry;
Learn from Jesus Christ to die.

Early hasten to the tomb
Where they laid His breathless clay;
All is solitude and gloom.
Who has taken Him away?
Christ is ris’n! He meets our eyes.
Savior, teach us so to rise.

This great hymn was written by James Montgomery (1771-1854). Wikipedia says of him:
    Montgomery, poet, son of a pastor and missionary of the Moravian Brethren, was born at Irvine in Ayrshire on 4 November 1771, and educated at the Moravian School at Fulneck, near Pudsey in Leeds. He failed school, became an apprentice baker, before settling in Sheffield in March 1792 as clerk to Joseph Gales on the 'Sheffield Register' newspaper. On July 4th 1794 he launched and edited the Sheffield Iris, and was twice imprisoned (in 1795, and again in 1796) for political articles for which he was held responsible. In 1797 he published Prison Amusements; but his first work to attract notice was The Wanderer of Switzerland (1806). It was followed by The West Indies (1809), The World before the Flood (1812), Greenland (1819), and The Pelican Island (1828), all of which contain passages of considerable imaginative and descriptive power, but, according to literary analysts, are lacking in strength and fire. He himself expected that his name would live, if at all, in his hymns, and in this his judgment has proved true. Some of these, such as "For ever with the Lord", "Hail to the Lord's Anointed",his carol, "Angels from the Realms of Glory, and "Prayer is the Soul's Sincere Desire", are sung wherever the English language is spoken. Probably his best-known poems are the one commemorating Arnold Winkelried and "A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief". Montgomery was a good and philanthropic man, the opponent of every form of injustice and oppression, and the friend of every movement for the welfare of the race. His virtues attained wide recognition. From 1835 until his death in 1854 Montgomery lived at The Mount on Glossop Road in Sheffield.
Go To Dark Gethsemane” never fails to move me, like so many hymns used in Lent and Holy Week. This link (click here) will take you to a video of a woman singing the hymn with real feeling. Though it is in a worship service, all are silent, even the children. Unfortunately the video does not end with the soloist. The congregation sings a song, and they certainly are not ready for prime time. I suggest you just stop the video after the soloist is finished.

Blessings in Christ,
Pastor John Rickert

No comments:

Post a Comment