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O Sacred Head, Now Wounded (Transgression)

© 2006 Diana Coate Wolverton. All rights reserved.
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“o sacred head, Now Wounded (Transgression)” focuses on one part of this hymn’s lyric that literally takes my breath away. Here is the weight of our human floundering and the depth and darkness of our transgressions. But here also is emerging light through the darkness: Christ’s substitutionary sacrifice for us when we come to Him, admitting, “Mine, mine was the transgression, but thine the deadly pain.”

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Framed example -- "O Sacred Head, Now Wounded (Transgression)"

O Sacred Head, Now Wounded (Transgression)


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Download a free song sheet of this hymnO Sacred Head, Now Wounded

Bernard of Clairvaux (1091–1153)
Translated by Paul Gerhardt, 1656, and James W. Alexander, 1830

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.

What thou, my Lord, has suffered was all for sinners’ gain:
mine, mine was the transgression, but thine the deadly pain.
Lo, here I fall, my Savior! ’Tis I deserve thy place;
look on me with thy favor, vouchsafe to me thy grace.

What language shall I borrow to thank thee, dearest Friend,
for this, thy dying sorrow, thy pity without end?
O make me thine forever; and should I fainting be,
Lord, let me never, never outlive my love for thee.

“But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”
—Isaiah 53:5

The Hymnscript Collection