Must Jesus bear the cross alone

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General information

This is a hymn that appears in many hymn books of the nineteenth century. The first stanza is based on a stanza by Thomas Shepherd, entitled For universal obedience. Shepherd's hymn this was altered by George N. Allen, who also added several stanzas of his own.

This hymn is often sung to the tune Maitland, often attributed to Allen, but surely from earlier sources. Maitland is also the name of a Scottish border clan; and the melody suggests folk song origins.

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Text and translations

English.png English text

Thomas Shepherd, 1693
Penitential Cries, Hymn 23

1. Lord, thou hast planted me a vine
In fertile soil and air;
Now tend and Water me as thine,
Make me thy daily Care:
My Christ, I'm wholly thine, direct
My wandering in the Dark:
O may my constant aims be strait.
Thine honor be my mark.

2. I have observed thy Sacred Laws
To be exceeding wide,
Let me not from the least of them
Turn willfully aside:
Lord, let thy word and Spirit guide
Thy Servant in thy way;
May I walk closely with my God,
And run no more astray.

3. Shall Simon bear thy cross alone,
And other saints be free?
Each saint of thine shall find his own.
And there is one for me:
When-e'er it falls unto my lot,
Let it not drive me from
My God; let me ne'er be forgot
Till thou hast loved me home.

4. O happy Christians, be not loath
To have a coarser fare;
Saints that have had no table-cloth
Had Christ at dinner there;
To do or suffer I am pleased,
So long as Christ stands by;
Support me with thy constant aid,
Lest all thy graces die.

5. Thy way is to the upright strength;
Lord, make it so to me,
That never tiring with the length,
My soul may reach to thee.

(mostly C. M. D.)

 

George N. Allen, 1844
Oberlin Social and Sabbath School Hymn Book

1. Must Jesus bear the cross alone,
And all the world go free?
No, there's a cross for every one,
And there's a cross for me.

2. How happy are the saints above,
Who once went sorrowing here;
But now they taste unmingled love,
And joy without a tear.

3. The consecrated cross I'll bear,
Till from the cross I'm free,
And then go home my crown to wear,
For there's a crown for me.

(C. M.)

 

Songs of Praise, L. Mudge, 1889


1. Must Jesus bear the cross alone,
And all the world go free?
No, there's a cross for every one,
And there's a cross for me.

2. How happy are the saints above,
Who once went sorrowing here;
But now they taste unmingled love,
And joy without a tear.

3. The consecrated cross I'll bear,
Till death shall set me free,
And then go home my crown to wear,
For there's a crown for me.

4. O precious cross! O glorious crown!
O resurrection day!
Ye angels from the stars come down,
And bear my soul away.

(C. M.)

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