Rock of Ages Cleft for Me

This is a hymn about salvation. It was written by English born, Irish educated Calvanist Anglican clergyman and hymn-writer Augustus Toplady (1740–1778) in 1763, and first published in The Gospel Magazine in 1775.

Local tradition is that Toplady wrote the hymn after seeking shelter from a thunderstorm under a large rock at Burrington Combe, close to Blagdon. However most historians do not agree with this.

With meter, tunes it is set to include:
  • TOPLADY (Hastings) by Thomas Hastings (1830)
  • REDHEAD NO. 76 by Richard Redhead (1853)


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Congregation (perhaps with choir) and organ, tune REDHEAD 76:

Unaccompanied choir, professional recording:

Lead singers and backing band - keyboard and guitar:


Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee;
let the water and the blood,
from thy wounded side which flowed,
be of sin the double cure;
save from wrath and make me pure.

Not the labours of my hands
can fulfil thy law's demands;
could my zeal no respite know,
could my tears forever flow,
all for sin could not atone;
thou must save, and thou alone.

Nothing in my hand I bring,
simply to the cross I cling;
naked, come to thee for dress;
helpless, look to thee for grace;
foul, I to the fountain fly;
wash me, Saviour, or I die.

While I draw this fleeting breath,
when mine eyes shall close in death,
when I soar to worlds unknown,
see thee on thy judgement throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee.

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