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Hymn: Jesus Christ, Our Blessed Savior

by PastorWilliams on April 17th, 2015

Jesus Christ, Our Blessed Savior

Author: John Hus (1415), Martin Luther
Typical Tune: Jesus Christus, unser Heiland (1533)

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HYMN BACKGROUND

John Hus was a Bohemian Reformer of the Church. His reforms sought to bring more of the Church’s work and life into the vernacular. This was one of his greatest impacts on Luther’s Reformation. Hus was very influenced by the work of Jon Wyclif, the Oxford Reformer who first translated the Bible into English. Wyclif was renounced as a heretic by the Council of Constance (1414-1418). His body was exhumed and his bones burned as a heretic. Hus sought to have the Bible and other writings of the Church to be translated into Czech. On July 6, 1415, he was declared a heretic by the Council of Constance and immediately burned to death.

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LYRICS

1 Jesus Christ, our blessed Savior,
Turned away God’s wrath forever;
By His bitter grief and woe
He saved us from the evil foe.

2 He, to pledge His love undying,
Spreads this table, grace supplying,
Gives His body with the bread,
And with the wine the blood He shed.

3 Banquet gifts God here is sharing;
Take them—after well preparing;
For if one does not believe,
Then death for life he shall receive.

4 Praise the Father, who from heaven
To His own this food has given,
Who, to mend what we have done,
Gave into death His only Son.

5 Firmly hold with faith unshaken
That this food is to be taken
By the sick who are distressed,
By hearts that long for peace and rest.

6 Agony and bitter labor
Were the cost of God’s high favor;
Do not come if you suppose
You need not Him who died and rose.

7 Christ says: “Come, all you that labor,
And received My grace and favor:
They that feel no want nor ill
Need no physician’s help nor skill.”

8 “For what purpose was My dying,
if not for your justifying?
And what use this precious food
if you yourself were pure and good?”

9 If your heart this truth professes
And your mouth your sin confesses,
You will be your Savior’s guest,
Be at His banquet truly blest.

10 Let this food your faith so nourish
That by love its fruit may flourish
And your neighbor learn from you
How much God’s wondrous love can do.

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COMMENTARY

Luther took Hus’ hymn and translated it from Czech into German. This hymn is a wonderful reminder of Jesus’ suffering on our behalf. Despite this bitter cost, Jesus invites everyone to come to Him for grace and favor. This invitation is most concretely seen through the Lord’s Supper.

From → Hymnody

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