THE OLD RUGGED CROSS
(1913) George Bennard (1913)
On a hill far away
stood an old rugged cross,
The emblem of
suffering and shame;
And I love that old
cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost
sinners was slain.
cherish the old rugged cross,
trophies at last I lay down;
cling to the old rugged cross,
exchange it someday for a crown
Oh, that old rugged
cross, so despised by the world
Has a wondrous
attraction for me;
For the dear Lamb of
God left His glory above
To bear it to dark
In the old rugged
cross, stained with blood so divine,
A wondrous beauty I
For ‘twas on that
old cross Jesus suffered and died
To pardon and
To the old rugged
cross I will ever be true,
Its shame and
reproach gladly bear;
Then He’ll call me
some day to my home far away,
Where His glory
forever I’ll share.
Author & Composer: George Bennard, 1873-1958
The Old Rugged Cross a sensational
Christian song was written by George Bennard in 1913.
He was born in Youngstown, Ohio.
Following the death of his father, he entered the ranks of
the Salvation Army and for a period of time he and his wife served
as officers of Salvation Army.
Later George Bennard was ordained as Minister of Methodist
Episcopal Church. He
was involved in conducting revival services in Michigan and New
York. One day
after returning to Michigan, he passed through a trying experience
which caused him to think about the importance of the cross and what
Paul the Apostle meant when he spoke of entering into the fellowship
of Christ’s suffering.
George Bennard has left the following
note regarding the writing of this hymn.
came to me one day in 1913, when I was staying in Albion, Michigan. I began to write “The Old Rugged Cross”.
I composed the melody first.
The words that I first wrote were imperfect.
The words of the finished hymn were put into my heart in
answer to my own need. Shortly thereafter, it was introduced at special meetings in
Pokagon, Michigan on June 7th 1913.
The first occasion where it was heard outside of the church
at Pokagon was at the Chicago Evangelistic Institute.
There it was introduced before a large convention and soon it
became extremely popular throughout the country
On October 9th 1958, at the age of
eighty five, George Bennard finished his race and exchanged his
‘cross for a crown’. Now near his home in Michigan, there still
stands a twelve foot high cross with the words,” The Old Rugged
Cross- Home of George Bennard, composer of this beloved hymn”.
CD : BEYOND THE STORMS
Devadas & Isaac Samuel