“If He Had Faltered Even Once” by Kevin Hartnett

They spit upon His meekness,
And struck Him in the face.
Their floggers swung with hatred;
They stripped Him in disgrace.
Deep worked the Roman anger
That tortured Him, a Jew;
Yet this His contemplation:
“They know not what they do.”

His people cheered “Hosanna,”
Then had Him crucified.
They freed corrupt Barabbas;
To sentence Him, they lied.
He hung outside their city,
Where leaders mocked Him too;
Yet this, the hurt He carried:
“I would have gathered you.”

No angels came to help Him
When Heaven on Him fell.
The Devil tried to reach Him
Through ev’ry lie in hell.
Unthinkable the anguish
As Father crushed the Son,
Yet this His firm conviction:
“Thy will, not mine, be done.”

No selfishness, no hatred,
No spitefulness was there.
No unbelief, no cursing,
No pity from despair.
One sinful thought; one failure,
And Love would not succeed.
The ransomed souls of hist’ry
Must His perfection plead.

If He had faltered even once,
In flames of hell would men abide.
Then ponder Christ, and praise at length
The strength of Him there crucified.

From http://khartnettpoetry.typepad.com/kevin_hartnett_poetry/2007/05/if_he_had_falte.html

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