There is a green hill far away

1
There is a green hill far away,
  Without a city wall,
Where the dear Lord was crucified,
  Who died to save us all.
  Oh, dearly, dearly has He loved,
  And died our sins to bear;
We trust in His redeeming blood,
    And life eternal share.
2
We may not know, we cannot tell,
  What pains He had to bear;
But we believe it was for us
  He hung and suffered there.
3
He died that we might be forgiven,
  He died to make us good,
That we might from our sins be freed,
  Saved by His precious blood.
4
There was no other good enough
  To pay the price of sin,
He only could divine life give
  And dwell Himself within.
3
Steve Miller

Detroit, Michigan, United States

I wanted to share this story of how Mrs. Alexander wrote another hymn because it shows the relationship between her and her husband:

Sometime after her marriage to the Reverend Alexander, Cecil sat in their home writing when her husband returned. He joked with her after greeting her, "Well, what is the effort of this day, my dear?" She told him that she had written a poem on his sermon subject for last Sunday, the Burial of Moses. "Honestly, dear" he joked, "I did not think you were listening." She handed him the poem. He read it and said, "My dear, this is the noblest piece of poetry you have ever written." It was indeed. "The Burial of Moses" is one of the finest poems in the English language.

"Next Sunday is St. Andrew's Sunday. I wonder if you could write a poem based on the call of Andrew before you heard the sermon?" It was a large order, but all who have sung, "Jesus calls us o'er the tumult" know how well she fulfilled that order or request. - "Hymn Stories" by Wilbur Konkel


Elizabeth Staeheli

Spokane, Washington, United States

Steve has the same book I have--The One Year Book of Hymns. After reading about this hymn, I looked it up on the Internet, so I could find the tune and sing it. Thanks to Hymnal.net, I can sing these old, traditional tunes that so few Christians are able to appreciate these days, because many churches now sing mostly "praise songs."


Steve Miller

Detroit, MI, United States

From her childhood, Cecil Frances Alexander wrote poetry, and as an adult she wrote primarily for children. She felt that the truths of Christianity could best be taught through hymns, so she tackled major doctrines with simple words. One project was a series of hymns based on the Apostles' Creed. She wrote "All Things Bright and Beautiful" to teach about God the Father as "Maker of heaven and earth." She wrote this hymn to teach about Jesus as He "suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead and buried."

Along with her husband, Reverend William Alexander, Cecil cared for the poor families in their parish in Ireland. "From one poor home to another she went," her husband wrote. "Christ was ever with her, and in her, and all felt her influence." She reportedly wrote this song while sitting at a child's sickbed. - Great Songs of Faith by Brown and Norton

The original chorus says:

Oh, dearly, dearly has He loved,

And we must love Him too,

And trust in His redeeming blood,

And try His works to do.