This week, I’m sharing a new song for Lent. It’s a remembrance of Jesus.
You can find sheet music for “I Remember” in our Free Stuff area.
I hope you enjoyed the song. Now, read on if you’re interested in why I wrote it.
I wrote this song to use in church last week, because I just couldn’t find a Lenten hymn that spoke to me. And the reason I couldn’t find one is because so many of the Lenten hymns in my hymnal include little bits of atonement theory that I’m just not in the mood for.
There’s “Down at the Cross” —
Down at the cross where my Savior died Down where for cleansing from sin I cried There to my heart was the blood applied...
And there’s “Beneath the Cross of Jesus” —
Content to let the world go by, to know no gain or loss My sinful self my only shame, my glory all the cross.
And there’s “The Old Rugged Cross” —
For upon that old cross Jesus suffered and died To pardon and sanctify me.
And there’s “Lift High the Cross” —
O Christ, once lifted on the glorious tree Your death has brought us life eternally.
And there’s “Alas! and Did My Savior Bleed” —
Was it for crimes that I have done, Christ groaned upon the tree? Amazing pity! Grace unknown! and love beyond degree!
And there’s “God Loved the World” —
And justified by Jesus' blood Your baptism grants the highest good.
And there’s “O Love, How Vast, How Flowing Free” —
For us was beaten, whipped, and tried, And taken to be crucified, So Love all this for us endured, And dying, life for us procured.
Anybody sensing a pattern here?
Deep in our Christian heritage, going back at least to the Apostle Paul and to the author of the letter to the Hebrews, is this understanding of how Jesus made a difference: that his death accomplished our atonement, somehow paying the price for our sins. I’ve never been a fan of that theory, and last week, I was in no mood to give it yet another airing in church.
Jesus makes a difference for me by his life, by his teaching, by his example, by his continuing presence, and, yes, by his death — by the example of his non-violent acceptance of an unjust and painful death.
And that’s what I tried to put into my song.