O sacred Head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down,
Now scornfully surrounded with thorns, Thine only crown;
How pale Thou art with anguish, with sore abuse and scorn!
How does that visage languish, which once was bright as morn!
What language shall I borrow to thank Thee, dearest friend,
For this Thy dying sorrow, Thy pity without end?
O make me Thine forever, and should I fainting be,
Lord, let me never, never outlive my love to Thee.
This is one of my favorite hymns and as I researched it, I found that it has eleven verses!
The two above are the verses we usually sing and I think these two verses are full of suitable content for discussion with children.
I sometimes hear people say they do not like reading the King James Version of the Bible because the language is difficult to understand. Yes, the language in the King James Bible and in this song is slightly different from the language we customarily use today, but I don’t think that is a reason to disregard either. (Anyone ever hear of The Constitution of the United States? The language is antiquated, but still pertinent!)
I think it is very important to expose children to a vast array of vocabulary, and hymns are a great way to do just that.
Here are some questions for discussion with children:
*Who is this song about?
*What words tell you that?
*What is “sore abuse”?
*What does “visage” mean?
*What is the question asking in the second verse?
*Why is the last word capitalized?