03202019 Wed of Lent 2 Emmanuel Lutheran Export PA

“Deep Were His Wounds”

03202019 Wed of Lent 2 Emmanuel Lutheran Export PA

March 20, 2019
“Deep Were His Wounds”
Sermon Audio

For those who have had surgery whether recently or in the past, the wounds inflicted by the knife of the surgeon leaves for some lasting scars.  It is clear that the ‘wounds’ are meant for healing and for we who gather this evening our hymn for us tonight connects even for those who have not been inside an operating room.  In order to begin to understand these connections, let’s begin by singing the first stanza of “Deep Were His Wounds”.

1 - Deep were his wounds, and red, on cruel Calvary, as on the cross he bled in bitter agony.But they whom sin has wounded sore find healing in the wounds he bore.

William Johnson, born on a farm northeast of Minneapolis, Minnesota like many of our previous hymn writers of our Lenten hymns was a poet having published two different collections of poetry.  Our hymn this evening clearly connects not to an unknown individual, but by mention of location we know it is none other than our Savior, Jesus Christ. ‘Deep were his wounds, and red, on cruel Calvary’.  How ‘deep’ the wounds were is not just a metaphorical word play, but a truth our Savior was willing to endure.  For ‘on the cross he bled in bitter agony’ because Jesus was willing to endure the Cross, endure the ‘wounds’ inflicted by implements of pain, so ‘sin’ would be paid for by His obedience and death.  As William wrote, ‘But they whom sin has wounded sore find healing in the wounds he bore’.  We by Jesus willingness to take on our ‘sin’ are forgiven and offered eternal life and do find ‘healing’ for our mind, body and spirit because of Jesus love for us and for all of mankind with, through and ‘by the wounds he bore’.  

Let’s continue in singing the second stanza, where we find ‘victory’ and how we are now ‘free’ ‘from sin’ as we sing “Deep Were His Wounds”.

2 - He suffered shame and scorn and wretched, dire disgrace; forsaken and forlorn, he hung there in our place.  But all who would from sin be free look to his cross for victory.

Like William Johnson, Leland Sateren composer of this tune connects with his Minnesotan and Scandinavian roots in our hymn.  His body of work consists of more than 400 pieces that are sung across our country and world. Yet, our hymn tonight connects so well with the imagery of what Jesus endured.  He ‘suffered shame and scorn and wretched, dire disgrace’.  Some would say our media does similar tactics, yet, what our hymn speaks of is beyond what most could endure.  Jesus was ‘forsaken and forlorn, he hung there’ and did so out of love for each and every one of us.  Jesus did this ‘in our place’ in order that ‘all who would from sin be free’.  Jesus experience on Calvary is His gift to us so we would not need to endure what we deserve, but in order for all of us to ‘look to his cross for victory’.  A ‘victory’ that is offered for us and for our salvation so we can be with Him in His kingdom for eternity.  This is what Jesus was willing to endure out of His love for us no matter the cost or price.

Let’s conclude by singing the last stanza hearing what Jesus was willing to give for us as we sing, “Deep Were His Wounds”.

3 - His life, his all he gave when he was crucified; our burdened souls to save, what fearful death he died!  But each of us, though dead in sin, through Christ's eternal life may win.

It is clear that Jesus Christ was willing to give ‘His life, his all he gave when he was crucified’.  Jesus willingness to do die was to fulfill the plan of salvation first spoken about in the Garden of Eden.  His gift to us was so that we might be free from not only our sin, receive the forgiveness we didn’t deserve, but to lighten our lives.  Jesus endured the Cross in order to unburden ‘our burdened souls’ and show His love for us by enduring the ‘fearful death he died’.  For you see, Jesus offers us this gift in order that ‘our burdened souls to save’!    So that we may be given the greatest gift of mankind of eternal life.  As the hymn concludes, ‘But each of us, though dead in sin, through Christ’s eternal life may win’.  We are offered and connected to Jesus Christ through the Cross of Calvary so we may have eternal life and ‘may win’ and live with Christ forever in heaven.

Our Savior’s gift knows no equal and truly is a win we do not deserve, but is the gift of grace, mercy and love that Jesus Christ was willing to offer us.  And it is only because of Jesus Christ willingness that transforms our understanding of His gift of grace so we can understand more fully His love for us and all of mankind as we learned how “Deep Were His Wounds” for us and all of mankind.  AMEN.