BLESSED REDEEMER written in 1920
Usually the text for a hymn is written before the music, but not in the case of this hymn.
Harry Dixon Loes (1892-1965) was a music student in Chicago. One day, Loes heard a sermon on Christ’s atonement entitled “Blessed Redeemer”. Inspired by that sermon, he composed a tune he thought would be appropriate to the feeling inspired by having a Blessed Redeemer. Then he sent that tune and the title to his friend, Avis Christiansen (1895-1985), a 25-year-old poet. She had already written a few hymns that had been published, and Loes thought she could do well with the material he sent her.
She responded with the 3 verses and the chorus we have today.
Avis Christiansen continued to write lyrics for hundreds of hymns… and Loes wrote about 3,000 hymn tunes.
Read this hymn, and – today – testify in your own way about your Blessed Redeemer.
Up Calv’ry’s mountain, one dreadful morn,
walked Christ my Savior, weary and worn;
facing for sinners death on the cross,
that He might save them from endless loss.
Blessed Redeemer! Precious Redeemer!
Seems now I see Him on Calvary’s tree;
wounded and bleeding, for sinners pleading,
blind and unheeding—dying for me!
“Father, forgive them!” thus did He pray,
e’en while His lifeblood flowed fast away;
praying for sinners while in such woe—
no one but Jesus ever loved so. (Refrain)
Oh, how I love Him, Savior and Friend,
how can my praises ever find end!
Through years unnumbered on heaven’s shore,
my tongue shall praise Him forevermore. (Refrain)