New Hymn Text: He Was Wounded (Isaiah 53)

For several years a number of influences have impressed on me the importance of singing Scripture—inspired texts, not just inspiring texts. There’s something uniquely powerful about singing the Scriptures put to music, especially when the biblical text was originally written as a song.

With that in mind, I’ve been working on a metrical setting of Isaiah 53, the Suffering Servant song that prophesies Christ’s suffering for sinners more vividly than any other OT text. (Actually, the song beings in Isaiah 52:13, so I’ve reached back to incorporate some of 52:13-15 into the new hymn, as well.) I write from the perspective of a NT believer, so at times I’ve “connected the dots” between the prophecy and the fulfillment. That said, I’ve labored to be true to the text. The result of my meditations is a text that I trust will point worshipers Christ-ward.

As for music, Greg Habegger had already composed a stirring tune to which I matched the text—a reversal of our usual way of doing things. I believe the music catches the pathos and the text catches the wonder of this astounding text. Lord willing, we’ll have a pdf and sample mp3 ready at soon.

Thanks to Joe Tyrpak, Matt LaCava, Matt Hoskinson, and Dan Salter for their input.

What a Savior we have!



He Was Wounded (Isaiah 53)

(Isaiah 52:13-15; 53:1-3)
Can it be? Who would believe? Our promised Prince lacked majesty;
Ostracized, deeply despised, a man from whom men hid their eyes.
Stricken hard, grotesquely scarred; no face was e’er so cruelly marred.
Beauty free—–a brittle tree—–yet through Him God’s strong arm we see!

He was wounded, He was wounded! Praise the Servant Sacrifice!
Hallelujah, Hallelujah! We are healed by Jesus’ stripes!

(Isaiah 53:4-6)
Though He groaned with pain His own, our griefs and tears He bore alone.
He was scourged as scoffers urged, and by his blood our guilt was purged.
Soldiers done, God hid the sun, then struck and smote and crushed His Son;
For the sin of sheep-like men God chastened God our peace to win!

(Isaiah 53:7-9)
Though distressed—–by men oppressed—–He uttered ne’er a mild protest;
Like a lamb, the great “I Am” said naught to those He might have damned.
Innocent, His soul was rent; eternal wrath on Him was spent!
In a cave, a borrowed grave, He lay for those He came to save.

(Isaiah 53:10-12)
As God willed His blood was spilled: the guilty spared, the guiltless killed.
Heaven’s King bore Heaven’s sting, was poured out as an offering.
Jesus died—–God satisfied—–thus many shall be justified!
Throne restored, His great reward shall come when all shout “Christ is Lord!”


3 Responses

  1. […] I came across this new text from Bro Chris Anderson (with an unbelievable rhyme scheme–shew–ambitious and impressive!) that would break down into some real sanctifying highway or by-way reading […]

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