which can be used in the congregations during Lent

at the weekly service and on Days of Prayer

according to the custom of each place

[by Thomas Kingo]

[from the Gradual of 1699]

[Translation © Mark DeGarmeaux unless noted]

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Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary home page (ELH has 16 hymns by Thomas Kingo)

O come, let us worship (A Study in Lutheran Liturgy and Hymnody by M. DeGarmeaux) (107k)

The Path of Understanding -- The Development of Lectionaries and their use in the Lutheran Church (by the Rev. Alexander Ring)

Judas' Despair
tune: Freu dich sehr
1 Sweetest sin, angel of passion
How thy smallest seed doth send
Tender shoots of fairest fashion,
Promising its flowers to send.
But thy fruit is shame and wrath,
Anguish, pain, eternal death,
Bitter heat and burning hell-fire
From God's judgement and His fierce ire.
2 Judas, like a mirror, shows me
Each and every source of sin,
Teaching sinners e'er so closely
How to flee the grasp of sin.
Sin and Satan came to him
His dominion all to win
That he might betray the Saviour
Earning Satan's evil favour.
3 When he saw the Lord then bearing
Shame of sin and guilt of death
Then in anguish he would spare Him
Now his roguish heart regrets.
How his conscience thus did sink
When He took sin's poisoned drink
When his wish with gall was blended
And with death eternal ended.
4 When he sees the silver pieces
Price for which his God he sold
Then his heart its beating ceases,
Every drop of blood turns cold.
Coin and money never may
Help him from his sinful way
Stamp of death his heart is sealing,
Pains of hell he soon is feeling.
5 See, my soul, how quick he yearneth
Favour from the priests to earn
How his conscience sorely burneth
Such blood-money to return.
Casting them on Temple floor,
Rending now his conscience sore
Many poisoned arrows bearing,
As his heart is much despairing.
6 See his wicked tears forth-breaking-
Now at last he understood
What great evil he was making
All against such holy blood.
God's own Son he had betrayed,
Who a captive now was made,
Bound to cross and shameful dying;
Judas with remorse is crying.
7 But his heart so coldly hardened
Though God yet would pardon send
Still he bows himself to Satan,
Unrepentant to the end.
All the joyous streams of heaven
To the ransomed souls e'er given
He so shamefully despises,
And to hellish river rises.
8 Jesus stands before his viewing,
Burdened with the whole world's sins,
Full of woe and shame and ruing
After Judas' bitter kiss
Unrepentant still to greet,
Falling at his Master's feet
Leaving Jesus in His danger,
Judas is to grace a stranger.
9 More yet, he his Lord betrayeth;
To God's grace still "Nay" he saith.
On His blood and wounds he treadeth,
Swiftly runs the way of death;
He rejects His pardoning pain
And His precious bloody stain;
Now a noose he soon is making,
Blood of Christ to judgement taking.
10 Let me never be accounted
With this wretched evil man;
Even if my sins be counted
More than all the ocean sand!
Even if I lie within
Thickest mire of deepest sin
Satan's many arrows bearing
Keep me, Lord, from e'er despairing.
11 If unto Thy throne and glory
With my sin I quickly flee
Then a gracious crown of glory
Must remain intact for me.
Even though by sin I can
Set us all in bond and ban
Still God has us all forgiven,
Still His Son as Saviour given.
12 Is there any sin that's greater
Than that Jesus' precious blood
Were not greater still to dry it
As He once did dry the flood
Which from out His heart broke forth
As He took on Him God's wrath
Since it was with poison rounded
And since Satan Him had wounded.
13 No! My Jesus' grace surpasses
All the sins of earth and more,
All the sinful woe and anguish
Laid upon His purple sore.
Safely anchored in His bay,
All my evil washed away,
In repentance I will drown me
Though sin's fetters once had bound me.

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