A HYMN FOR TODAY – Beneath the Cross of Jesus


Beneath the cross of Jesus
I fain would take my stand,
The shadow of a mighty rock
Within a weary land,
A home within the wilderness,
A rest upon the way,
From the burning of the noontide heat
And the burden of the day.

There lies beneath its shadow,
But on the farther side,
The darkness of an awful grave
That gapes both deep and wide,
And there between us stands the cross,
Two arms outstretched to save,
A watchman set to guard the way
From that eternal grave.

Upon that cross of Jesus
Mine eye at times can see
The very dying form of one
Who suffered there for me;
And from my smitten heart with tears
Two wonders I confess:
The wonders of redeeming love
And my unworthiness.

I take, O cross, thy shadow
For my abiding place;
I ask no other sunshine than
The sunshine of His face;
Content to let the world go by,
To know no gain or loss,
My sinful self my only shame,
My glory all the cross.

Irr. – Elizabeth C. Clephane, 1869

Tune: ST. CHRISTOPHER – Frederick C. Maker, 1881

#537 in Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Song, 2012

Verse 2 is too often omitted from some hymnals


4 thoughts on “A HYMN FOR TODAY – Beneath the Cross of Jesus

  1. A truly wonderful hymn. Last time we sang it I broke down and cried (I am not like my Mom who could sing and cry at the same time).

  2. Greetings from Wordwise Hymns. Your blog caught my eye this morning because Elizabeth Clephane was born on this day in 1830. You can read more about her and her hymn here: http://wordwisehymns.com/2010/06/18/today-in-1830-elizabeth-clephane-born/

    The stanza you share is a good one, and you’re right, it’s often omitted. However, there are five stanzas to the hymn, not just four. The one you refer to is the third; the actual second stanza is this:

    O safe and happy shelter, O refuge tried and sweet,
    O trysting place where heaven’s love and heaven’s justice meet!
    As to the holy patriarch that wondrous dream was giv’n,
    So seems my Saviour’s cross to me, a ladder up to heav’n.

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