Scripture Verse

The angel of the abyss: His name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he has the name Apollyon. Revelation 9:11


Neil Barham (1962–)

Words: Neil Bar­ham, 2005.

Music: Blaen­haf­ren tra­di­tion­al Welsh tune (🔊 pdf nwc).


Great Apol­lyon, grim and aw­ful,
Steeped in gore and stained in blood—
Death, with all his fear­some forc­es,
Has be­sieged the Son of God.
Satan, clothed with ev­il ar­mor,
Darkly gleam­ing, proud and cold—
Merciless, he joins the bat­tle,
Armed and clad with pow’r un­told.

Bowed be­neath de­mon­ic on­slaughts,
Jesus fights His awe­some du­el!
Pain de­vours its ho­ly Vic­tim,
Searing, sa­vage, rag­ing, cru­el!
Eager waits the Mouth of She­ol,
Huge, in­sa­ti­able, and strong!
Maw agape, the Grave yearns af­ter
Holy Flesh—but not for long.

Writhing un­der Law’s most fear­some
Curse, ru­ined, lost, pol­lut­ed, wrecked;
Languishing in Sa­tan’s pri­son
Lie the souls of God’s elect.
At the Cross—de­sire of Hell!—
Christ gives up that fi­nal breath:
Now, at last, the choic­est Cap­tive
Tastes the mor­tal sting of death!

Darkness falls; the seeth­ing smoke of Hell
Cloaks the bat­tle­field from view.
Down the head of God has fall­en:
Law and Wrath re­ceive their due!
Satan smiles in seem­ing tri­umph,
Reaching out, his prize to take.
Three brief days all Hell re­joic­es—
Then the stone be­gins to shake!

Now the night of wrong is end­ed;
Now the grave has lost its prize!
Now the Ris’n One breaks the back of Sin:
There! Be­hold! See how death dies!
Resurrection light now scat­ters
Satan’s ar­mies from the field.
Christ has drawn the fear­ful sting of death:
Sheol and Ab­ad­don yield!

At His glance the migh­ty pri­son
Built by Law and Sin falls down!
Countless in their thou­sand thou­sands,
All His ran­somed praise His crown!
Heav’n and Hell’s as­ton­ished spi­rits
In their joy and rage all stare
At the Vic­tor of the cross who
Won His great­est bat­tle there.

The Entombment
Raphael (1483–1520)