Thursday in the first week of Advent: Once he came in blessing

The Isaiah reading for today reminds us that Advent calls us — contrary to current popular opinion — to repent of our sins. Thus today’s offering here.

Once he came in blessing,
all our ills redressing;
came in likeness lowly,
Son of God most holy;
bore the cross to save us,
hope and freedom gave us.

Still he comes within us,
still his voice would win us
from the sins that hurt us;
would to truth convert us
from our foolish errors
ere he comes in terrors.

Thus, if thou hast known him,
not ashamed to own him,
but wilt trust him boldly
nor dost love him coldly,
he will then receive thee,
heal thee, and forgive thee.

He who thus endureth
bright reward secureth.
come, then, O Lord Jesus,
from our sins release us;
let us here confess thee
till in heaven we bless thee.

Words: Jan Roh, 1544; translated by Catherine Winkworth, 1863.

Here’s a Marcel Dupré setting of the chorale.

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