On the Passion

The following is the beginning of St. Ephraim the Syrian’s hymn on the Passion of Christ. You can find the entire hymn



I am afraid to speak
and touch with my tongue
this fearful narrative
concerning the Saviour.
For truly it is fearful
to narrate all this.

Our Lord
was given up today
into the hands of sinners!

For what reason then
was one who is holy
and without sin given up?

For having done no sin
he was given up today.

Come, let us examine closely
why Christ our Saviour
was given up.

For us, the ungodly,
the Master was given up.

Who would not marvel?
Who would not give glory?

When the slaves had sinned
the Master was given up.

The sons of perdition
and the children of darkness
went out in the darkness
to arrest the sun
who had the power
to consume them in an instant.

But the Master, knowing
their effrontery
and the force of their anger,
with gentleness,
by his own authority,
gave himself up
into the hands of the ungodly.

Leave a Reply