As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Beneath the Cross of Jesus

More musings....

And from my broken heart, with tears, two wonders I confess: the wonder of redeeming love and my unworthiness.

Oh, what wonders!

I discovered some of the history of the beautiful hymn:
“Beneath the Cross of Jesus" was written by Elizabeth Clephane in 1868, one year before her death. It was not published, however, until 1872, when it appeared anonymously in The Family Treasury with several of her other poems. The original poem consisted of five stanzas, but today only three are used in most hymnals.

It is obvious that Elizabeth, like most Scottish Presbyterians of her day, was an ardent Bible student for her hymn is replete with Biblical symbolism and imagery.

For example, in stanza one: The reference to "the mighty Rock" is taken from Isaiah 32:2.

The reference to "the weary land" is taken from Psalm 63:1.

The reference to "home within the wilderness" is taken from Jeremiah 9:2.

The reference to "rest upon the way" is taken from Isaiah 28:12.

The reference to "noontide heat" is taken from Isaiah 4:6

The reference to "burden of the day" is taken from Matthew 11:30.

Elizabeth Celphane is also the author of "The Ninety and Nine".
Elizabeth Clephane

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.

Upon the cross of Jesus, mine eyes 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 nor loss,
My sinful self, my only shame, my glory all the cross.


  1. ,Good Morning Cheryl,
    I love to read the history behind hymns that have been written. This is a beautiful hymn, I am so thankful for His redeeming love at the cross, where i can take my stand too.
    Thank you for sharing.

  2. What amazing words, Cheryl. One could sit and ponder each verse for hours and still never fathom the depths. It really does make you wonder about the life of the author of the hymn; to be able to express such wonders so tenderly and so beautifully. I really love the hymn "The Ninety and Nine", too. Thank you for sharing and for helping me to pause for a few moments and consider what these words are conveying. I will have this hymn going through my mind the rest of the day, and that's a very good thing.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...