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.
So I'll cherish the old rugged cross,
Till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown.
O 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 Calvary.
In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine,
A wondrous beauty I see,
For 'twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died,
To pardon and sanctify me.
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.
I love the words to this old hymn.What is your favorite hymn? One of the most popular song is "The Old Rugged Cross". It was written in 1912 by George Bennard (1873-1958).
"George Bennard, was a native of Youngstown, Ohio but was reared in Iowa. After his conversion in a Salvation Army meeting, he and his wife became brigade leaders before leaving the organization for the Methodist Church. As a Methodist evangelist, Bennard wrote the first verse of the gospel song, "The Old Rugged Cross" in Albion, Michigan, in the fall of 1912.Bennard himself said that it was 1913. Kenneth W. Osbeck, 101 Hymn Stories (Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1982), 255. Charles H. Gabriel, a well-known gospel-song composer helped Bennard with the harmonies.William J. Reynolds, Songs of Glory: Stories of 300 Great Hymns and Gospel Songs (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1990), 219-20. The completed version was first performed on June 7th, 1913, by a choir of five in Pokagon Michigan. Published in 1915, the song was popularized during Billy Sunday evangelistic campaigns by two members of his campaign staff, Homer Rodeheaver (who bought rights to the song for $500) and Virginia Asher, who were perhaps also the first to record it in 1921. The Old Rugged Cross uses a sentimental popular song form with a verse/chorus pattern in 3/4 time, and it speaks of the writer's Christian experience rather than his adoration of God. Bennard retired to Reed City, Michigan, and the town maintains a museum dedicated to his life and ministry.Reed City Museum"