If love shall stand the final test
If love shall stand the final test,
it must assuage your foe’s wild breast;
that you are mild when he’s irate
is Christian love in its pure state.
That lesson is as sour and tart
as to our nature is death’s dart,
seems much too heavy and too stern
for Adam’s flint-hard race to learn.
Yes, if we trust in our own might,
we’ve quickly armed ourselves to fight
and cannot stem the raging flood
of fury in the old Adam’s blood.
Oh let the heart do penance sweet,
in Jesu’s blood both merge and beat!
Then will the gentle mind of Christ
as imprint in the soul be pressed.
When we through faith’s strong fire and light
our Jesu’s heart can find aright,
that he for his own murderers prayed
when they but mockery displayed,
when in the heart’s depths we collate
our many sins and their great weight
which God forgave us at one breath
in Jesu’s suffering and death,
when this the Spirit makes quite clear,
then in the soul’s ignited here
a love that has so strong a glow
that it embraces every foe.
This love has such a blazing heat
all earthly ash it will defeat,
the soul to God will make return –
the fifth commandment then we learn.
Oh, with a fervent heart may I
sweet Jesus, love you till I die
and to your wounds draw close, for somost gladly will I love my foe!