As he sat cold and shivering
With the rope still round his neck,
He heard the cell door open
And he stood up to inspect.
The light was white and blinding.
The man’s face was like the sun.
The voice said, “Come, dear Judas.
It is finished; it is done.
The ransom was well worth it,
To bring you back to me.
They stripped me and they beat me.
They hung me on that tree.
The old and wretched debt is gone
Through an older form of trade.
Not with thirty silver pieces
but with my own blood I paid.”
Judas fell before the holy man,
And his heart quickly beat.
The weeping figure took his hair
And wiped the Savior’s feet.
“I merit no such care from you,
I deserve to rot in here.
The kiss I gave you led to death
And it’s my due to live in fear.”
The Son of Man looked down on him
And offered him his hand.
Judas was lifted by the piercéd palm,
Though barely he could stand.
“There is no greater love, my friend,
Than the love I have for you.
If only you would come with me
If only now you knew.
I said it would have been better for you
if you had not been born,
the way you had been born, of course,
in sin, and pain, and scorn.
But let me carry you,
My apostle and my friend,
Out of this cold, dark dungeon
and you will be born again.”