Words by Nikolaus L. von Zinzendorf (1700-1760), 1739, Translated by John Wesley (1703-1791), 1740
Tune: GERMANY in William Gardiner’s “Sacred Melodies,” 1815
Key signature: B flat major (2 flats)
1. Jesus, Thy blood and righteousness My beauty are, my glorious dress: ‘Midst flaming worlds, in these arrayed, With joy shall I lift up my head.
2. Bold shall I stand in Thy great day; For who aught to my charge shall lay? Fully absolved through these I am From sin and fear, from guilt and shame.
3. The deadly writing now I see Nail’d with Thy body to the tree: Torn with the nails that pierced Thy hands, The old covenant no longer stands.
4. Though, signed and written with my blood, As hell’s foundations sure it stood, Thine hath washed out the crimson stains, And white as snow my soul remains.
5. Satan, thy due reward survey; The Lord of Life why didst thou slay? To tear the prey out of thy teeth; To spoil the realms of hell and death.
6. The holy, the unspotted Lamb, Who from the Father’s bosom came, Who died, for me, even me, to atone, Now for my Lord and God I own.
7. Lord, I believe Thy precious blood Which at the mercy seat of God Forever doth for sinners plead, For me, even for my soul, was shed.
8. Lord, I believe, were sinners more Than sands upon the ocean shore, Thou hast for all the ransom paid, For all a full atonement made.
9. Lord, I believe the price is paid, For every soul the atonement made; And every soul Thy grace may prove, Loved with an everlasting love.
10. Carnal, and sold to sin, no more I am; hell’s tyranny is o’er: The immortal seed remains within, And, born of God, I cannot sin.
11. Yet naught whereof to boast I have; All, all Thy mercy freely gave; No works, no righteousness are mine; All is Thy work, and only Thine.
12. When from the dust of death I rise To claim my mansion in the skies, Even then, this shall be all my plea, Jesus hath lived, hath died for me.
13. Thus Abraham, the friend of God, Thus all heaven’s armies bought with blood, Savior of sinners Thee proclaim; Sinners, of whom the chief I am.
14. Naked from Satan did I flee, To Thee, my Lord, and put on Thee: And thus adorned, I wait the word, He comes: arise, and meet thy Lord.
15. This spotless robe the same appears When ruined nature sinks in years: No age can change its constant hue; Thy blood preserves it ever new.
16. When Thou shalt call in that great day For my account, thus will I say: “Thanks to my gracious Lord, if aught Of good I did, glad I it wrought:
17. “And while I felt Thy blood within Cleansing my soul from every sin, Purging each fierce and foul desire; I joyed in the refining fire.
18. If pride, desire, wrath stirred anew, Swift to my sure resort I flew: See there my Lord upon the tree! Hell heard: instant my soul was free.
19. Then shall Heaven’s hosts with loud acclaim Give praise and glory to the Lamb, Who bore our sins, and by His blood Hath made us kings and priests to God.
20. O ye, who joy to feed His sheep, Ever in your remembrance keep, Empty they are, and void of God, Till brought to the atoning blood.
21. Jesus, be endless praise to Thee, Whose boundless mercy hath for me, For me, and all Thy hands have made, An everlasting ransom paid.
22. Ah, give me now, all-gracious Lord, With power to speak Thy quickening word; That all who to Thy wounds will flee May find eternal life in Thee.
23. Thou God of power, Thou God of love, Let the whole world Thy mercy prove: Now let Thy word o’er all prevail; Now take the spoils of death and hell.
24. O, let the dead now hear Thy voice; Now bid Thy banished ones rejoice; Their beauty this, their glorious dress, Jesus, Thy blood and righteousness!