A Hymn for Holy Saturday

A hymn, titled Behold the Savior of Mankind, written by John and Charles Wesley’s father, Samuel. The last verse is especially applicable for Holy Saturday

Behold the Savior of mankind,
nailed to the shameful tree;
how vast the love that him inclined
to bleed and die for thee!

Hark how he groans! while nature shakes,
and earth’s strong pillars bend!
The temple’s veil in sunder breaks,
the solid marbles rend.

‘Tis done! the precious ransom’s paid!
“Receive my soul!” he cries:
see where he bows his sacred head!
He bows his head and died!

But soon he’ll break death’s envious chain
and in full glory shine.
O Lamb of God, was ever pain,
was ever love like thine? — Samuel Wesley (1662-1735).

According to The United Methodist Hymnal, this was “one of the few relics of his papers found after the fire which destroyed the Epworth rectory during the night of February 9, 1709.” 1


1 Both the poem and the historical information are from The United Methodist Hymnal (Nashville, TN: United Methodist Publishing House, 1989), 293.