They shall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him. Zechariah 12:10
Words: Jean B. de Santeüil, in the Cluniac Breviary, 1686. In its initial publication, the hymn had a first line of Quid Obstupendum Cernimus, but in subsequent publications it appeared as Sensus Quis Horror Percutit. Translated from Latin to English by Robert Campbell in his St. Andrews Hymns and Anthems, 1850, page 78 (Awful Thought of Endless Doom). In Orby Shipley’s Annus Sanctus, the first line appeared as shown below.
Fearful thought of endless doom—
Skies are rent, the Judge is come;
Clouds His throne; around Him stand
Angel guards, a countless band.
Hear the voice from shore to shore,
Tells that time shall be no more;
See the dead from dust arise,
Summoned to the great assize.
On His right are placed the just,
To the left the wicked thrust;
Well to Him are sinners known—
Known, but severed from His own.
These a blest retreat have won,
Earth’s delights who learned to shun;
Chose affliction, pain and loss,
Followed Him who bore the cross.
Cross, from which the Hebrew turned,
Cross, by haughty Gentiles spurned;
Thee with joy the righteous see,
But the lost with agony.
Deeper still their shame and dread,
Seeing Him whose blood they shed;
Lord, from sin Thy people keep,
Lest its dreadful fruit they reap.
Mingling joy with holy fear,
Praise we Him whose day is near;
Bless alike the Father’s name,
And the Spirit’s praise proclaim.