When once I mourned a load of sin,
When conscience felt a wound within,
When all my works were thrown away,
When on my knees I knelt to pray,
Then, blissful hour, remembered well
I learnt Thy love, Immanuel!
When storms of sorrow toss my soul,
When waves of care around me roll,
When comforts sink, when joys shall flee,
When hopeless gulfs shall gape for me,
One word the tempest’s rage shall quell,
That word, Thy name, Immanuel.
When for the truth I suffer shame
When foes pour scandal on Thy name,
When cruel taunts and jeers abound,
When “bulls of Bashan” gird me round,
Secure within my tower I’ll dwell,
That tower, Thy grace, Immanuel.
When hell, enraged, lifts up her roar,
When Satan stops my path before,
When fiends rejoice and wait my end,
When legion’d hosts their arrows send,
Fear not, my soul, but hurl at hell
Thy battle-cry, Immanuel.
When down the hill of life I go,
When o’er my feet death’s waters flow,
When in the deep’ning flood I sink,
When friends stand weeping on the brink,
I’ll mingle with my last farewell
Thy lovely name, Immanuel.
When tears are banished from mine eyes,
When fairer worlds than these are nigh,
When heaven shall fill my ravished sight,
When I shall bathe in sweet delight,
One joy all joys shall far excel,
To see Thy face, Immanuel.
Composed by Charles H. Spurgeon for the jubilee services at Waterbeach on June 26, 1853 (that’s right–at nineteen!).