Rock of Ages, cleft for me

1
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee;
Let the water and the blood,
From Thy riven side which flowed,
Be of sin the double cure,
Save me from its guilt and power.
2
Not the labor of my hands
Can fulfill Thy law’s demands;
Could my zeal no respite know,
Could my tears forever flow,
All could never sin erase,
Thou must save, and save by grace.
3
Nothing in my hands I bring,
Simply to Thy cross I cling;
Naked, come to Thee for dress,
Helpless, look to Thee for grace:
Foul, I to the fountain fly,
Wash me, Savior, or I die.
4
While I draw this fleeting breath,
When mine eyes shall close in death,
When I soar to worlds unknown,
See Thee on Thy judgment throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.
96
Thomas Odongo

Kampala, Central Uganda, Uganda

When all hope is gone. This songs reminds you that we've a hiding place in Jesus Christ Our Lord.


Beverly

Riverview, FL, United States

It’s the last verse that speakers to me as I am quite ill. I know, that I know, that I know that someday when I close my eyes here on this earth, that I will be face to face with my Savior, my King. No one can sing this better than Vestal Goodman, rest her soul.


Peggy Currelley

Stone Mountain, GA, United States

This truly blessed my soul. The old-time hymns stir ones soul deeply resulting in that peace that passes all understanding. Amen.


Atito

Louisville, KY, United States

This hymn is so profound. I was reminded of it when I read the following excerpt from a sermon by A. W. Tower today

“There is an art of forgetting, and every Christian should become skilled in it. Forgetting the things which are behind is a positive necessity if we are to become more than mere babes in Christ. If we cannot trust God to have dealt effectually with our past we may as well throw in the sponge now and have it over with. Fifty years of grieving over our sins cannot blot out their guilt. But if God has indeed pardoned and cleansed us, then we should count it done and waste no more time in sterile lamentations. And thank God this sudden obliteration of our familiar past does not leave us with a vacuum. Far from it. Into the empty world vacated by our sins and failures rushes the blessed Spirit of God, bringing with Him everything new. New life, new hope, new enjoyments, new interests, new purposeful toil, and best of all a new and satisfying object toward which to direct our soul's enraptured gaze. God now fills the recovered garden, and we may without fear walk and commune with Him in the cool of the day. Right here is where the weakness of much current Christianity lies. We have not learned where to lay our emphasis. Particularly we have not understood that we are saved to know God, to enter His wonder-filled Presence through the new and living way and remain in that Presence forever. We are called to an everlasting preoccupation with God. The Triune God with all of His mystery and majesty is ours and we are His, and eternity will not be long enough to experience all that He is of goodness, holiness and truth. In heaven they rest not day or night in their ecstatic worship of the Godhead. We profess to be headed for that place; shall we not begin now to worship on earth as we shall do in heaven? ”

A. W. Tozer Sermon: No Looking Back


Suz

Nairobi, Westlands, Kenya

Awesome song indeed!


Elizabeth A Barnes

Junction City, Kansas, United States

This song does speak of repentance... it say cleanse me from it double guilt. It say let the water & blood be the double cure, CLEANSE me.....


Emma

Kisumu, Nyanza, Kenya

A very encouraging song to me whem I'm down, it really touches my soul whenever I sing it. I like the song very much.


Bouncin Benny

Winslow, NJ, United States

It wasn't written for the unsaved, but the saved. Not all hymns are about repentance, some are about holding onto what you have.


Leigh Powell

United Kingdom

This old hymn does not mention repentance, which is crucial to being born again. It is possible to sing this hymn without one being a born again Christian, and so not really knowing the experiences which this hymn portrays. The Lord Jesus Christ is only the Rock of Ages to those people whose names are written on the palm ofHis hand (Isaiah), the born again Christians. People become born again of God when they repent and believe the gospel (Mark 1).

People not born again of God cannot enjoy the protection of God in spiritual matters. Satan can possess people, but He cannot possess born again Christians as their body is the temple of the Holy Spirit ( 1 Corinthians 3). God the Holy Spirit and Satan cannot live in the same body, and God always wins each battle for possession.


Clive Cudmore

PEI, Canada

Visited the cleft in the rock where Rev. Topworthy got shelter from the storm, from where he decided to write this hymn.

1977 while on a visit to friend Clifford Smith, of Weston Super are.

God saves fallen human beings by resolving the problem of sins and by dealing with our sin. The hymn "Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me" (Hymns, #1058) is a good Christian song. It is a valuable, classic Christian hymn. The key point of this hymn is found in the last lines of the first stanza: "Let the water and the blood, / From Thy riven side which flowed, / Be of sin the double cure, / Save me from its guilt and power." Guilt is due to our outward sinful deeds and shows that we have received eternal punishment; power refers to the power of the sinful nature within us. How can we resolve the problem of sin and sins? It is through the water and the blood which flowed from the Lord's riven side. The blood redeems us from the eternal punishment related to our sins, and the water saves us from the power of sin. This is the double cure mentioned in this hymn. Therefore, this hymn is well written, and the truth in it is very clear.

This shows that we must have a thorough knowledge of the truth. "Let the water and the blood, / From Thy riven side which flowed, / Be of sin the double cure, / Save me from its guilt and power." The Lord's blood washes away our outward transgressions and saves us from the guilt of eternal punishment. The water denotes the Lord's resurrection life, which enters into us and is the power to deliver us from the power of sin. In Romans 7:24 Paul said, "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of this death?" He is speaking of our inward, sinful nature. In 8:1 Paul says, "There is now then no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus." The condemnation here does not refer to being condemned to go to the lake of fire but to the condemning within us. Many husbands do not want to lose their temper with their wife. They set their will and pray, but they still lose their temper. After getting angry, they condemn themselves for being wretched, and they wonder who can save them. However, there is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, because the law of the Spirit of life has freed us from the law of sin and of death (v. 2). This is what is referred to in the line of the hymn "Save me from its...power." The blood redeems us outwardly, and the life saves us inwardly. Redemption delivers us from our sinful deeds, and salvation delivers us from our sinful nature.

The hymns are another tool for preaching the gospel. We can preach the gospel to others by singing hymns, such as Hymns, #1058. I translated this hymn into Chinese, and Brother Nee polished it and made some improvements, including my translation of the line "Be of sin the double cure." The first cure for sin deals with the record of our sins before God, for which we should receive eternal punishment. The second cure for sin deals with the law of sin within us, which brings us under the ruling of the power of sin. This hymn also speaks of "the water and the blood" that flowed from the Lord's side. The blood deals with the record of our sins before God, and the water denotes the law of the Spirit of life. This law enables us to overcome the law of sin and of death (Rom. 8:2). I mention this because I hope that some young people may be raised up to learn to write hymns.

Hymns, #1058, verse 1 says, "Rock of Ages, cleft for me, / Let me hide myself in Thee; / Let the water and the blood, / From Thy riven side which flowed, / Be of sin the double cure, / Save me from its guilt and power." We have a double problem. On the one hand, we have a record of sins before God. On the other hand, we have the nature of sin within us. Only the blood and water can be the double cure for our sin. On the one hand, the redemptive blood redeems us that we may escape the eternal punishment for sins. On the other hand, the water of life saves us that we may be delivered from the power of sin. Sin not only causes man to suffer eternal punishment, but it also has the power, which is the law of sin, to dominate man from within. In our natural life we have no way to overcome the law of sin and of death, but the law of the Spirit of life can free us in Christ from the law of sin and of death. Only the precious blood can solve the problems concerning our condemned position and our record of sins. Only the Spirit of life can solve our problem concerning the law of sin and of death. God's full salvation consists not only of the redemption through the precious blood but also of the salvation by the Spirit of life.

The writer of this hymn refers to the "double cure." His redemption gives us a double cure. First He washes away our sins, and second He regenerates us. His blood saves us from the guilt of sin and His life saves us from the power of sin. In His redemption Christ can give us a double cure—He washes away our filthiness and He keeps away our death. This double cure is His redemptive work, yet for us to enjoy His redemptive work, we must be willing to be imprisoned in His death. While we are in His death, He has the position to secrete Himself around our being. Then we will surely receive the double cure and we will be produced as pearls for the entry into God's building.

Augustus Toplady

This very godly person, when he counted his sins, considered that every second he committed at least one sin. That is to say that in ten years, there were more than three hundred million sins. Therefore, he wrote that glorious hymn which caused millions of people, who were tired and oppressed by sin, to find rest—"Rock of Ages, cleft for me, / Let me hide myself in Thee"! He wrote:

Oh, is there one as pitiable as I in this world! Besides weakness and sin I have nothing. In my flesh there is no good thing, and how surprising that I could be tempted to view myself so high. The best work I have done in my life only qualifies me to be condemned.

But when he was dying of tuberculosis in London, he leaned his sinful head on the breast of the Savior and said, "I am the happiest man in this world."