PIE JESU

31st August 2012 by Bill Davis

I have never been much for Opera. Guess it is really too far over this country boy’s head. But I have enjoyed Celtic Woman’s version of Pie Jesu. Never understood the words, just enjoyed hearing them perform it. I decided to do a little research on the song. Seems the song was written in the late 1800’s. One source said it was taken from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Requiem”. Another source said it was from Gabriel Faure’s Requiem in D minor. Another said it was original song by Sarah Brightman. Now I do know enough about Opera to know Sarah Brightman is not 120+ years old. It does appear sources agree that Pie Jesu was written as a setting for the Roman Catholic Mass for the Dead.

My point is not why, when or where it was written; but what is its message. I started looking at various language translations of the work and was fascinated at the words. A literal translation is rather difficult. Seems a lot of Latin is not directly translatable into English; but as near as I could find, it is as follows.

“Merciful Jesus,

You who take away the sins of the world

Grant them peace

Grant them everlasting peace.”

John the Baptist had a wonderful ministry. Have you ever wondered why the “fishermen” were so willing to follow Jesus when He said:

Matthew 4:19 King James Version (KJV); “Then He said to them, ‘Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”

These were hard core fishermen. Why were they willing to just drop their nets, leave their jobs and families and follow someone they barely knew. What did John the Baptist have to do with this and where does Pie Jesu fit in?

John 1:29 New International Version (NIV); “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”

John 14:27 New International Version (NIV); Jesus said: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

“Lamb of God,

 You who take away the sins of the world;

Grant them peace,

Grant them peace.

Peace everlasting, everlasting.”

There can be no forgiveness of sin without a sacrifice. There was no sacrifice worthy of forgiving our sins except Jesus Christ. Normally in Biblical times, a lamb; spotless and unblemished, was used as the means of sacrifice. Jesus Christ was our Lamb. The Son of God, the Lamb of God. He gave up His righteous life for us, the unrighteous. This is just the way God designed it. All we have to do is repent of our sins, believe in the crucified, dead and buried Christ and we too will be saved.

Bill Davis

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