Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary Handbook

— Hymn Texts and Tunes —

(TUNES ARE IN ITALIC CAPITAL LETTERS.)

 

Vain world, now farewell!  529

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VALET WILL ICH DIR GEBEN  151, 277, 535

The melody used for this hymn has been called “St. Theodulph,” because it has long been connected with the Latin hymn, “Gloria, laus et honor” (All glory, laud and honor), written about 820 by St. Theodulph of Orleans. It has also been called “Kronstadt” and “Valet” (Will ich dir geben) because it was composed to a hymn with this beginning under the title, Ein andägtiges Gebet, Leipzig, 1615. The melody was composed by Melchior Teschner, cantor at Frauenstadt in Silesia, about 1611. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune, “Valet will ich dir geben,” is also called “St. Theodulph”, especially when used with that author’s “All Glory Laud and Honor”, is an excellent chorale tune. It is by Melchior Teschner. It appeared in 1615 in a twelve-page tract, published in Leipzig, containing Valerius Herberger’s hymn “Valet will ich dir geben” and two melodies by Teschner. This is the second one an it is supposed to have been written in 1613, the same year in which Herberger wrote his hymn. Bach uses this tune in his St. John’s Passion. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VATER UNSER  383, 493, 499, 530, 573

The melody appeared first in Geistliche Lieder, Valten Schumann, Leipzig, 1539. It is extensively used in England and in America, and also among the Reformed churches. It is known by the name of The Old 112th, Vater Unser, Walther, 1530. It occurs three times in The Hymnal used in the famous Trinity Church of New York.—Tempo, 56 quarter-notes to the minute. Bach employed it in his Choralgesänge, and Mendelssohn used it in his Sixth Sonata for Organ. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Vater unser,” which appeared with the hymn in 1539, is of unknown authorship. Luther had written a tune for the text, which he, however, discarded and then allowed the hymn to be published with this tune, which he carefully revised. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VENI EMMANUEL  110

The tune is commonly called “Veni, Emmanuel” and has usually been given as of 13th-century origin; but all efforts to trace it have been in vain. Authorities now seem to be agreed that it is an adaptation of a plain-song Kyrie. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VENI CREATOR SPIRITUS* (See: KOMM, GOTT SCHÖPFER)  10

 

 

VERLEIH UNS FRIEDEN  584

 

 

VEXILLA REGIS PRODEUNT  273

 

 

VICTORY (PALESTRINA*)  357

The melody (Victory) was arranged by W. H. Monk (see Vol. I, No. 55). It is based upon Palestrina’s Magnificat Tertii Toni, 1591, and was prepared for the first edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Palestrina,” also called “Victory,” is an adaptation by Williem H. Monk from the “Gloria” of Palestrina’s Magnificat Tertii Toni, 1591. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VIENNA  201, 381, 515

The melody (Vienna, Ohne Rast, or St. Boniface) appeared first in J. H. Knecht’s Vollständige Sammlung, Stuttgart, 1799, set to the hymn, “Ohne Rast und unverweilt.” [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Vienna,” also called “St. Boniface,” “Ravenna,” and “Ohne Rast,” is by Justin Heinrich Knecht and is found in Vollständige Sammlung, etc., Stuttgart, 1799, a collection edited by Knecht and J. F. Christmann, where it is set to Johann Adolf Schlegel’s hymn “Ohne Rast und unverweilt.” It was composed in 1797. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VOM HIMMEL HOCH  123, 124

This hymn was first published in Geistliche Lieder D. Mart. Luther (Wittenberg, Joseph Klug), where it was coupled with the folk tune “Ich komm’ aus fremden Landen her.” The tune, ‘‘Vom Himmel hoch,” perhaps by Luther himself, with which this hymn is now universally sung, first appeared with the text in Geistliche Lieder, aufs new gebessert und gemehrt, zu Wittenberg, Gedruckt zu Leyptzik durch Valten Schumann, 1539.

J. S. Bach has several settings of the tune, one of them in his great Christmas Oratorto. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VON GOTT WILL ICH NICHT LASSEN  465

The melody, which is of secular origin, was arranged for church use by Johannes Eccard, born 1553 in Mühlhausen. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Von Gott will ich nicht lassen” is from Christliche vnd Tröstliche Tischgesenge, Erfurt, 1572. It is supposed to be from a secular melody, a hunter’s song, “Ich ging einmal spazieren.” [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

VRUECHTEN  349

 

 

 

WACHET AUF  518, 544

This melody has been called The King of Chorale. It was composed by Nicolai himself for this hymn. Its beginning somewhat resembles the fifth Gregorian church tune. The name is fitting. It is a festival and majestic melody which has been extensively employed in many later compositions. Mendelssohn used it in his overture to the oratorio St. Paul and also in his Hymn of Praise. Handel’s famous Hallelujah Chorus of The Messiah also has a passage which reminds us of “Wake, awake, for night is flying.” “The kingdom of this world is become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever.” (See also Vol. I, No. 72.) The editors of Hymns ancient and Modern, Historical Edition, state concerning this tune: “It has attained an immense popularity and has been utilized by great composers from Bach and onward.” It is found in all the leading hymn books throughout the English-speaking countries. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Wachet auf” is also by Nicolai and appeared with the hymn in 1599. It may have been suggested by earlier tunes, at least some of its phrases, as the opening line is reminiscent of the Fifth Gregorian Tone.

Winterfeld calls it the greatest and most solemn melody of Evangelical Christendom. It has been utilized by composers from Bach onward. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Wake, awake for night is flying  544

Wachet auf! ruft uns die Stimme

Der Wächter sehr hoch auf der Zinne,

Wach auf, du Stadt Jerusalem!

Mitternacht heisst diese Stunde,

Sie rufen uns mit hellem Munde:

Wo seid ihr klugen Jungfrauen?

Wohlauf, der Bräut’gam kommt,

Steht auf, die Lampen nehmt!

Halleluja!

Macht euch bereit zu der Hochzeit,

Ihr müsset ihm entgegengehn!

 

Zion hört die Wächter singen.

Das Herz tut ihr vor Freuden springen,

Sie wacht und stehet eilend auf.

Ihr Freund kommt vom Himmel prächtig,

Von Gnaden stark, von Wahrheit mächtig,

Ihr Licht wird hell, ihr Stern geht auf.

Nun komm, du werk Kron’,

Herr Jesu, Gottes Sohn!

Hosianna!

Wir folgen all’ zum Freudensaal

Und halten mit das Abendmahl.

 

Gloria sei dir gesungen

Mit Menschen- und mit Engelzungen,

Mit Harfen und mit Zimbeln schön.

Von zwölt Perlen sind die Pforten

An deiner Stadt, wir sind Konsorten

Der Engel hoch um deinen Thron.

Kein Aug, hat je gespürt,

Kein Ohr hat mehr gehört

Solche Freude.

Daa sind wir froh, i-o, i-o

Ewig in dulci iubilo.

 

This hymn is called “the King of Chorales.” Philipp Nicolai published it in the Appendix to his Frewden-Spiegel, 1599. It is based on Matt. 25:1-13; Rev. 19:6-9; 21:22; 1 Cor. 2:9; Ezek. 3:17; and Is. 52:8. It was entitled “Of the Voice at Midnight and the Wise Virgins who Meet Their Heavenly Bridegroom. Matt. 25.”

In the original the hymn is a reversed acrostic, the first letters in the stanzes W. Z. G., referring to Count Wilhelm Ernst, “Graf zu Waldeck,” who was Nicolai’s pupil and who died at Tübingen Sept. 16, 1598. The hymn is patterned after the Wächterlieder (watchmen’s songs) of the Middle Ages. In these songs “the voice of the watchman from his turret summons the workers of darkness to flee from discovery; with Nicolai it is a summons to the children of light to awaken to their promised reward and full felicity.” (James Mearns, in Julian.) [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THE Scriptural basis for this hymn is as follows: Matthew 25:1-13: “Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom”;

Revelation 19:6-9: “And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth”;

Revelation 21:21: “And the twelve gates were twelve pearls”;

First Cor. 2:9: “As it is written, things which eye saw not, and ear heard not, and which entered not into the heart of man, whatsoever things God prepared for them that love Him”; Isaiah 52:8: “The voice of thy watchmen! they lift up the voice, together do they sing; for they shall see eye to eye, and when Jehovah returneth to Zion.”

This hymn, together with “The morning star upon us gleams” (see Vol. II, No. 220), and two other hymns, was printed as a supplement to Nicolai’s spiritual meditations: Frewden-Spiegel des ewigen Lebens (Mirror of the Joys of Eternal Life), 1599, Frankfurt am Main. It has the title: Concerning the Voice at Midnight, and the Wise Virgins Who Meet Their Heavenly Bridegroom.

It is supposed to have been written about 1597 in Unna, Westphalia, where Nicolai served as pastor during the terrible pestilence which raged in that territory July, 1597, until January, 1598. Over 1,300 persons died during this epidemic. The parsonage was located near the cemetery, where many funerals were conducted daily; one day 30 persons were hurled.

It was in the midst of all sorrow and privation that Nicolai turned his thoughts into meditations upon death and eternity, and especially towards the heavenly Father’s home, where “death shall be no more; neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain, any more: the first things are passed away” (Rev. 21:4). From these thoughts, as he expressed it, he derived much consolation. During this time he wrote his meditation: Frewden-Spiegel des ewigen Lebens. At this time were born in his soul the mighty hymns which have moved the world and which will resound in the Church of God as long as the world stands. We quote Nicolai’s statements from his meditations: “The true Christian rests assured that, if he today or tomorrow should die in the Lord, his soul will be borne up to the holy and blessed angels; he will see God face to face and be gathered with His people. Meditation upon this brings us into the right beginning of the great joy, honor, and glory which shall continue forever. As the wedding guests assemble, the one after the other, in the radiant home of the bride and accompany the bride and the bridegroom to the Church of God and there experience the joy complete, thus the souls of the saints assemble in the heavenly paradise with the Bridegroom, Jesus Christ, and there enjoy the happiness and glory of the heavenly marriage joys, until judgment day breaks forth. Then they shall also receive their bodies from the earth and out of their flesh they shall see God and become partakers in full measure of joy and glory.”

This melody has been called The King of Chorale. It was composed by Nicolai himself for this hymn. Its beginning somewhat resembles the fifth Gregorian church tune. The name is fitting. It is a festival and majestic melody which has been extensively employed in many later compositions. Mendelssohn used it in his overture to the oratorio St. Paul and also in his Hymn of Praise. Handel’s famous Hallelujah Chorus of The Messiah also has a passage which reminds us of “Wake, awake, for night is flying.” “The kingdom of this world is become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever.” (See also Vol. I, No. 72.) The editors of Hymns ancient and Modern, Historical Edition, state concerning this tune: “It has attained an immense popularity and has been utilized by great composers from Bach and onward.” It is found in all the leading hymn books throughout the English-speaking countries.

Nicolai’s hymns with their marked subjective sincerity ushered in a new era in hymn writing. They form a prologue to the Evangelical “Jesus-Hymns” which from the beginning of the 17th century gave to the Church “a new song.” The hymnologist Söderberg says: “Neither can it be considered a matter of chance that these beautiful harp tones should sound forth through the bitter doctrinal controversies almost at the same time that Johann Arndt (15551621) was publishing his first edition of Sande Kristendom (True Christianity). In the beautiful hymn lyrics and in Arndt’s devotional classic was truly preserved all that was fundamental in the spiritual heritage from the Reformation century.”

The beginning of “Wake, awake,” resembles the Watchmen’s Songs, of which there were a great number in those days. There are at least 16 English versions. Among the translations into Norwegian, Rudelbach gives high rank to Landstad’s version. He says: “This leaves hardly any more to be desired.” We also have a fine rendering in W. A. Wexel’s “Vaagner op, en Stemme byder,” which is a Norse translation of the Swedish version of this hymn by J. O. Wallin. (For biography of Nicolai, see Vol. II, No. 220.) [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

Wake, the welcome day appeareth  95

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THIS hymn first appeared in the author’s Neues Geistreiches Gesangbuch, 1714, composed of eleven verses. In our version verses 2, 7, and 8 are omitted (Landst. verses 2, 6, and 8). Its Biblical basis is as follows: 1, Isaiah 61:2; Psalm 130:6-8. 2, Luke 10:24. 3, Genesis 12:3; 22:18. 4, John 12:27-28; Luke 19:10. 5 (L. H.), Eph. 5:2; Gal. 3:13. 5 (Landst.), Hebr. 8:5; 10:1. 6, 2 Cor. 3:17; Rom. 8:15-16. 7, Matt. 27:51; Hebr. 10: 19; John 8: 12. Our translation was rendered by Miss [Frances Elizabeth] Cox and published in her Sacred Hymns from the German, 1841. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

WALTHER  350

The tune “Walther” was composed by C. F. W. Walther to go along with his hymn “He’s risen,” which bears the heading “On the First Easter Day, April 8,1860, on the Ocean.” It was therefore composed on the journey Walther took that year to Germany for recuperation. Stanzas 5 to 9 of the original are omitted. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WÄR GOTT NICHT MIT UNS ◊ 396

The tune “Wär’ Gott nicht mit uns” first appeared, set to this hymn, “If God had not been on our side”, in Johann Walther’s Gesang Buch, Wittenberg, 1537. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WAREHAM  309

The melody (Wareham) is composed by William Knapp, born in England, 1698. He was parish clerk of St. James, Poole, Dorsetshire. He published Set of New Psalms and Anthems in Four Parts, 1738, and New Church Melody, “being a Set of Anthems, Psalms, and Hymns in four parts, with an Imploration written by Charles I during his captivity in Carisbrook Castle, 1753.” Knapp died in 1768. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Wareham” is by William Knapp in his Sett of New Psalm Tunes, etc., 1738, where it was set to the new version of Ps. 36: 5-10, “But, Lord, Thy mercy, my sure hope.” [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WARUM SOLLT ICH MICH DENN GRÄMEN  377

The tune “Warum sollt’ ich mich denn grämen,” also calied “Bonn,” which is wedded to the text, is by Johann G. Ebeling and appeared in his Das ander Dutzet Geistlicher Andacht-Lieder, Frankfurt a. d. O.,1666. This is a collection of Paul Gerhardt’s hymns to which Eberling had composed new tunes. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WAS FRAG ICH NACH DER WELT  107, 446

Through the kindness of the Rev. Arthur W. Farlander, we are able to give the following on the tune “Was frag’ ich nach der Welt”:

 

“It is an anonymous melody first appearing in Himmels-Lust und Welt-Unlust complied by A. Fritsch in Jena in 1679. It is sometimes calied Darmstadt because it appeared subsequently in Geistreiches Gesangbuch, Darmstadt, 1698, set to the words of Dessler’s hymn ‘Was frag’ ich nach der Welt.’ In the Jena volume it was set to Jacob Schuetz’s words: ‘Die Wollust dieser Welt.’ Bach uses the melody in several of his cantatas, chief among them being No. 45: ‘Es ist dir gesagt, Mensch, was gut ist,’ composed for the 8th Sunday after Trinity, c. 1740. In this work Bach uses the melody for the final chorale, the words being the second stanza of the hymn ‘O Gott, du frommer Gott,’ beginning: ‘Gib, dass ich tu mit Fleiss.’ Author of the hymn: J. Heermann.” [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WAS GOTT TUT   519, 536

Gastorius wrote the melody for the hymn. It was printed in the Hannover Hymn Book, Göttingen, 1676. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

Regarding the tune “Was Gott tut,” there has been much discussion on its authorship. Some authorities, questioning the authorship of Gastorius, hsve ascribed it to Johann Pachelbel of Nürnberg, a contemporary of Gastorius. Zahn, however, on the basis of a careful study of the sources, definitely establishes the authorship of Gastorius. The melody appeared in the Auserlesenes Weimarisches Gesangbuch, 1681. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WAS MEIN GOTT WILL  261, 477

The tune “Was mein Gott will” is from a French melody of 1529 to 1531. which appeared in Trente et quatre chansons musicales, etc., Paris, where it is set to the text of a French love-song, beginning “Il me suffit de tous mes maulx.” Joachim Magdeburg took the tune from this hymn in 1572. The harmonization is by Johann Sebastian Bach. The great Lutheran musician had a particular liking for this melody, which he used more than any other single tune. He uses it in his Passion according to St. Matthew; again, in his Choralkantate Was mein Gott will, das g’scheh’ allzeit for the Third Sunday after Epiphany; again, in his Choralkantate Ich hab’ in Gottes Herz und Sinn for Septuagesima Sunday; and in four other cantatas. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

We all believe in one true God, Father  38

Wir glauben all’ an einen Gott,

Schöpfer Himmels und der Erden,

Der sich zum Vater geben hat,

Dass wir seine Kinder werden.

Er will uns allzeit ernähren,

Leib und Seel’ auch wohl bewahren,

Allem Unfall will er wehren,

Kein Leid soll uns widerfahren;

Er sorget für uns, hüt’t und wacht,

Es stent alles in seiner Macht.

 

Wir glauben auch an Jesum Christ,

Seinen Sohn und unsern Herren.

Der ewig bei dem Vater ist.

Gleicher Gott von Macht und Ehren;

Von Maria, der Jungfrauen,

Ist ein wahrer Mensch geboren

Durch den Heil’gen Geist im Glauben,

Für uns, die wir war’n verloren,

Am Kreuz gestorben und vom Tod

Wieder auferstanden durch Gott.

 

Wir glauben an den Heil’gen Geist,

Gott mit Vater und dem Sohne,

Der aller Blöden Tröster heisst

Und mit Gaben zieret schöne,

Die ganz’ Christenheit auf Erden

Hält in einem Sinn gar eben;

Hier all’ Sünd’ vergeben werden,

Das Fleisoch soll auch wieder leben

Nach diesem Elend ist bereit

Uns ein Leben in Ewigkeit. Amen.

 

This is Luther’s metrical paraphrase of the Nicene Creed. It was first published in Geistliche gesangk Buchleyn, Wittenberg, 1524, and again in 1525 together with the second tune.

The translation is composite. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THIS hymn appeared first in the Culmbach-Bayreuth Gesangbuch, 1668, with the signature “C. A. D.” In 1676 it was included in the Nürnberg Hymnal with Clausnitzer’s name attached. The English translation is by Miss Winkworth as given in her Chorale Book for England, 1863. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

We all believe in one true God, Who created  37

Wir glauben all’ an einen Gott,

Vater, Sohn und Heil’gen Geist,

Der uns hilft in aller Not,

Den die Schar der Engel preist,

Der durch seine grosse Kraft

Alles wirket, tut und schafft.

 

Wir glauben auch an Jesum Christ,

Gottes und Marien Sohn,

Der vom Himmel kommen ist

Und uns führt in’s Himmels Thron

Und uns durch sein Blut und Tod

Hat erlöst aus aller Not.

 

Wir glauben auch an Heil’gen Geist,

Der von beiden gehet aus,

Der uns Trost und Beistand leist’t

Wider alle Furcht und Graus.

Heilige Dreifaltigkeit,

Sei gepreist zu aller Zeit!

 

This metrical paraphrase of the Apostles’ Creed is by Tobias Clausnitzer. It first appeared in the Culmbach-Bayreuth Gesang-Buch, 1668.

The translation is an altered form of that by Catherine Winkworth in her Chorale Book for England, 1863. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

DURING the Middle Ages a short Latin version of the Creed was sung at the altar service. It was rendered in this manner: first the priest sang the words, “Credo in unum deum” (I believe in one God), then the choir continued, “Patrem omnipotentem” (the Father Almighty) etc. Both the text and the melody were extensively used, and the hymn was called “Patrem,” from the first word sung by the choir. In the 15th century this hymn is found with both Latin and German texts, also in a version with the German text only, under the title, Das deutsche Patrem. Following out this idea, Luther composed his famous hymn of three stanzas, “Wir glauben all’ an einen Gott,” printed first in Walther’s Geistliches Gesangbüchlein, 1524. Luther’s hymn is a free rendering. He has not attempted to include all parts of the Creed. Of the older German versions he has used only the beginning. But he has retained the same title as in the older versions: Das deutsche Patrem. It is based on the Nicene Creed. Luther says: “Patrem, that is, the articles of faith which were drawn up by the Council of Nice.” Luther;s hymn became popular at once and was sung at services after the sermon. Luther’s German altar book prescribes: After the Gospel (chanted before the altar) the whole congregation shall sing the Faith in German: “Wir glauben all’ an einen Gott.” It was also used at funerals. The body was then lowered into the grave as the congregation sang the words: “Das Fleisch soll auch wieder leben” (All flesh shall rise again). It was thus used at the funeral of Frederick the Wise in 1525. Luther included it among 6 funeral hymns which he published in 1542. The hymn has found a place in almost all Lutheran hymnals. The Danish translation is very likely by Klaus Mortensön, printed in his hymnal. But he has included more of the Creed than Luther’s original, namely, “conceived by the Holy Ghost, suffered under Pontius Pilate, descended into hell.” He does not call his translation Patrem, but Credo. This holds also for a number of later versions. Miss Winkworth’s English translation has also been varied somewhat for publication in The Lutheran Hymnary.

The melody is not by Luther, as some have thought. It dates from the Middle Ages. It is found in manuscripts from the 15th century with both German and Latin texts. One such copy is kept in the library of Breslau. Johann Walther modified the old melody to suit Luther’s version of the text. It was arranged by Walther for four-part chorus. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

We are called by one vocation  421

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Published in Pirna, 1833, Psalter und Harfe, first series, five stanzas under the title: Unity in Spirit.

If there is therefore any exhortation in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any tender mercies and compassions, make full my joy, that ye be of the same mind, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind; doing nothing through faction or through vainglory, but in lowliness of mind, each counting other better than himself” (Phil. 2:1-3. See also 1 Cor. 1:10; 1 Peter 2: 11 ff; 1 Tim. 6:3-5; Rom. 12:16; 15:5; “Judge not”: Luke 6:36 ff.; Matt. 7:1.) [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

We bless Thee, Jesus Christ our Lord  275

Wir danken dir, Herr Jesu Christ,

Dass du für uns gestorben bist

Und hast uns durch dein teures Blut

Gemacht vor Gott gerecht und gut,

 

Und bitten dich, wahr’r Mensch und Gott,

Durch dein’ heilig’ fünf Wunden rot,

Erlös’ uns von dem ew’gen Tod

Und tröst uns in der letzten Not!

 

Behüt uns auch vor Sünd’ und Schand’,

Reich uns dein’ allmächtige Hand,

Dass wir im Kreuz gedaldig sei’n,

Uns trösten deiner schweren Pein

 

Und draus schöpfen die Zuversicht,

Dass du uns werd’st verlassen nicht,

Sondern ganz treulich bei uns stehn,

Bis wir durchs Kreuz ins Leben gehn.

 

This hymn by Christoph Fischer (Vischer) is included in the second part of the Dresden Gesangbuch, 1597. According to Mützell it bore the title “A children’s hymn, composed by M. [Magister] Christoph Vischer for the Christian community at Schmalkalden upon the strengthening use of the bitter sufferings and death of Christ Jesus, our Savior.” [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THIS hymn is found in the Dresden Gesangbuch, 1597, and bears the author’s mark, “M. C. F.” The hymnologist J. Mützell published the hymn under the title: A Children’s Hymn, composed for the Christian congregation of Schmalkalden, by M. Christoph Vischer. … This is the only hymn which we have from his hand. He composed a number of other works [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

We Christians may rejoice today  122

Wir Christenleut’ Hab’n jetzund Freud,

Weil uns zu Trost ist Christus Mensch geboren,

Hat uns erlöst; Wer sich des tröst’t

Und glaubet’s fest, soll nicht werden verloren.

 

Ein Wunderfreud’: Gott selbst wird heut’

Ein wahrer Mensch von Maria geboren;

Ein’ Jungfrau zart Sein’ Mutter ward,

Von Gott dem Herren selbst dazu erkoren.

 

Die Sünd’ macht Leid, Christus bringt Freud’,

Weil er zu uns in diese Welt gekommen.

Mit uns ist Gott Num in der Not;

Wer ist, der jetzt uns Christen kann verdammen?

 

Drum sag’ ich Dank Mit dem Gesang

Christo, dem Herrn, der uns zugut Mensch worden,

Dass wir durch ihn Nun all’ los sind

Der Sündenlast und unträglicher Bürden.

 

Halleluja, Gelobt sei Gott!

Singen wir all’ aus unsers Herzens Grunde;

Denn Gott hat heut’ Gemacht solch’ Freud’,

Der wir vergessen soll’n zu keiner Stunde.

 

This hymn by Caspar Füger (Fugger) was first published in Drey schöne Newe Geistliche Gesenge, 1592, entitled “Another Christmas hymn” (“Ein ander Weihnachtslied”). Whether it was written by father or son, both of whom bore the same name, is uncertain.

The translation, by Catherine Winkworth, appeared in her Chorale-Book for England, 1863. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

We give Thee but Thine own  445

William W. How wrote this hymn in 1854. It was first published in Morrell and How, Psalms and Hymns, 1864. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

We have a sure prophetic Word  234

Emanuel Cronenwett published this hymn, entitled “Holy Scripture,” in the Ohio Lutheran Hymnal, 1880. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

We now implore God the Holy Ghost  33

Nun bitten wir den Heiligen Geist

Um den rechten Glauben allermeist,

Dass er uns behüte an unserm Ende,

Wenn wir heimfahr’n aus diesem liende.

Kyrieleis!

 

Du wertes Licht, gib uns deinen Schein,

Lehr uns Jesum Christ kennen allein,

Dass wir an ihm bleiben, dem treuen Heiland,

Der uns bracht hat zum rechten Vaterland.

Kyrieleis!

 

Du süsse Lieb’, schenk uns deine Gunst,

Lass uns empfinden der Liebe Brunst,

Dass wir uns von Herzen einander lieben

Und im Frieden auf einem Sinn bleiben.

Kyrieleis!

 

Du höchster Tröster in aller Not,

Hilf, dass wir nicht fürchten Schand’ noch Tod,

Dass in uns die Sinne doch nicht verzagen,

Wenn der Feind wird das Leben verklagen!

Kyrieleis!

_____________

 

Nû biten wir den heiligen geist

umbe den rechten glouben allermeist,

daz er uns behüete an unsrem ende,

sô wir heim suln varn ûz disem ellende.

Kyrieleis.

 

This stanza, quoted in a sermon by the Franciscan brother and famous medieval preacher, Berthold of Regensburg († 1272), gave the impetus for this hyrnn. The stanza no doubt was suggested by the sequence “Veni, Sancte Spiritus.” According to Koch it was sung by the people in the Pentecost service “during the ceremony in which a wooden dove was lowered by a cord from the roof of the chancel or a living dove was thence let fly down.”

Martin Luther recognized the value of the stanza, calling it “einen feinen, schönen Gesang,” and added three stanzas of his own, invoking the Holy Spirit as the true Light, as the sacred Love, and as the highest Comfort. His version first appeared in Johann Walther’s Gegstlich gesangk Buchleyn, Wittenberg, 1524. The hymn is generally appointed for Whitsuntide, but has also been used for Holy Communion, for the ordination of ministers, as a hymn before the sermon, and for the beginning of worship.

The translation is composite and was prepared for The Lutheran Hymnal. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THIS hymn was based upon a stanza found in one of the medieval German hymns, which was as follows:

Nun bitten (or Nu biten) wir den Heiligen Geist umb den rechten glouben allermeist, daz er uns behuete an unserm ende, so wir heim suln varen uz diesen ellende, Kyrieleis.

The stanza has been found, in quotation, in one of the sermons of the Franciscan monk, Berthold, famous preacher of Regensburg, who died in the year 1272. Hence, the stanza had been in use prior to his time. Berthold’s sermon manuscript containing this stanza is now kept in the Heidelberg library. A later version has been found in the Psalter Ecclesiasticus, Mainz, 1550. As this stanza was sung during the worship on Pentecost Day, an artificial dove fastened to a string was lowered into the church or a real dove was turned loose to flutter about in the room. The above mentioned Berthold of Regensburg drew such great numbers by his sermons that the meetings had to be conducted outside the church. He writes concerning this stanza: “‘Nun bitten wir den Heiligen Geist’ is in truth a useful and dear hymn, and the more ye sing it, the better. With wholehearted devotion, ye ought to sing it and cry unto God. It was a happy find, and a wise man has written it.”

Luther adopted this Pentecost stanza and added the three following. In this new form the hymn was first printed in Johann Walther’s collection for four voices: Geistliche Gesang-Büchlein, 1524, together with the melody. It has found a place in all Lutheran hymn books. Luther, who himself ordered it for use after communion, later included it among his funeral hymns. It has commonly been sung on Pentecost Day, but in many places it is used as a fixed hymn to be sung before the sermon every Sunday. The oldest Danish translation is found in the missal of 1528 and is no doubt the work of Klaus Mortensøn. This version was made use of in the first Danish-Norwegain hymn book by Guldberg. The first stanza here is as follows:

Nu bede wy then helligaandh, alt om then Christelighe thro och reth forstandh, thet oss Gud beuare och sin naade sende, nar wy hæden fare aff thetthe ellende. Kyrieleis.

In the second edition of Klaus Mortensøn’s Hymnal, 1529, there is, besides this version, also another by the minister, Arvid Pedersøn. Again, a third attempt, which is rather a free translation, appeared together with these in the Malmø Hymn Book of 1533. Grundtvig’s translation has been adopted in the new Danish hymnals. The accepted Norwegian version is by Landstad. The first stanza is always used in our Church at the ordination of ministers.

During the terrible persecutions of the Protestant Christians of France in 1560, when many were tortured and killed, this hymn became in numerous instances the “swan song” of the martyrs. In Germany, we are told, even criminals condemned to death sang “Nun bitten wir den Heiligen Geist,” when being brought to the gallows. Skaar says: “In this hymn many have found comfort in the anguish of death.” Our English translation in The Lutheran Hymnary is by the Rev. O. G. Belsheim. There are in all 12 English translations.

The melody is possibly as old as the first stanza of the hymn. The oldest source is a Hussite cantionale from the 15th century. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

We praise Thee, O God, our Redeemer  466

This hymn, almost carol-like in character, is the prayer of thanksgiving sung by the Dutch to celebrate their final victory, with the help of England, over the Spanish oppressor, in the last quarter of the sixteenth century. We have been able to obtain only the following two stanzas of the original:

 

1. Wilt heden nu treden voor God den Heere,

Hem boven al loven van herte zeer.

En maken groot, Zijns lieven namens eere,

Die daar nu onzen vijand slaat ter neer.

 

2. Bidt, waket en maket dat g’in bekoring

En’t kwade met schade toch niet—en valt.

Uw vroomheid brengt den vijand tot verstoring,

Al waar zijn rijk nog eens zoo sterk bewald.

 

The text with its traditional tune was first published by Adrian Valerius in his Nederlandtsch Gedenckclanck, Haarlem, 1626. The hymn, however, has become popular in our country through the German use of it, which began when Edward Kremser introduced it to the Germans with his male choir in 1877. This is the reason why the tune is generally called “Kremser.” There are several German versions of the text, the one by Karl Budde, 1897, being the most widely known, beginning:

 

Wir treten zum Beten vor Gott den Herren

Ihn droben zu loben mit Herz und Mund.

So rühmet froh sein’s lieben Namens Ehren,

Der jetzo unsern Feind warf auf den Grund.

 

The English text by Julia Bulkley Cady Cory is a very free rendition of the hymn, eliminating the references to war and making it rather a hymn of general thanksgiving. The translation was written in 1904. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

We sing Thy praise, O God  45

\\

 

We sing, Immanuel, Thy praise  152

Wir singen dir, Immanuel,

Du Lebensfürst und Gnadenquell,

Du Himmelsblum’ und Morgenstern,

Du Jungfrausohn, Herr aller Herr’n.

Halleluja!

 

Von Anfang, da die Welt gemacht,

Hat so manch Herz nach dir gewacht,

Dich hat gehofft so lange Jahr’

Der Väter und Propheten Schar.

Halleluja!

 

Nun, du bist hier. Da liegest du,

Hältst in dem Kripplein deine Ruh’,

Bist klein und machst doch alles gross,

Bekleid’st die Welt und kommst doch bloss.

Halleluja!

 

Du bist der Ursprung aller Freud’

Und duldest so viel Herzeleid;

Bist aller Heiden Trost und Licht,

Suchst selber Trost und find’st ihn nicht.

Halleluja!

 

Ich aber dein geringster Knecht,

Ich sag’ es frei und mein’ es recht:

Ich liebe dich, doch nicht so viel,

Als ich dich gerne lieben will.

Halleluja!

 

Der Will’ ist da, die Kraft ist klein;

Doch wird dir nicht zuwider sein

Mein armes Herz, und was es kann,

Wirst du in Gnaden nehmen am.

Halleluja!

 

Hätt’ ich nicht auf mir Sündenschuld,

Hätt’ ich kein Teil am deiner Huld;

Vergeblich wär’st du mir geborn,

Wenn ich nicht wär’ in Gottes Zorn.

Halleluja!

 

Ich will dein Halleluja hier

Mit Freuden singen für und für,

Und dort in deinem Ehrensaal

Soll’s schallen ohne Zeit und Zahl.

Halleluja!

 

This cento includes Stanzes 1, 3, 6, 9, 11,12, 17, and 20 of Paul Gerhardt’s hymn, originally published in sixteen stanzas in Crüger’s Praxis Pietatis Melica, Berlin, 1653, and then in twenty stanzas in Ebeling’s Geistliche Andachten, 1667. Although it is now seldom sung in its entirety on account of its length, it is a beautiful hymn to Immanuel, the Longed-for by the patriarchs and prophets.

The translation is a composite based on the versions by Catherine Winkworth, Lyra Germanica, first series, 1855, and Frances Elizabeth Cox, Lyra Messianica, 1864. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

CRUEGER’S Praxis Pietatis Melica, published in Berlin, 1653, contained this hymn of sixteen stanzas. In Ebeling’s edition of Gerhardt’s Geistliche Andachten, 1667, four stanzas are added. The complete hymn of twenty verses is found in Wackernagel’s edition of Gerhardt’s Geistliche Lieder, and in several later editions. There are twelve English translations. Our version in The Lutheran Hymnary is by Miss Winkworth and dates from 1855. (Notes on Gerhardt may be found under No. 157). [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

We thank Thee, Jesus, dearest Friend  394

Wir danken dir, Herr Jesu Christ,

Dass du gen Himmel g’fahren bist.

O starker Gott, Immanuel,

Stärk uns an Leib, stärk uns an Seel’!

Halleluja!

 

Gen Himmel ist er g’fahren hoch

Und ist doch allzeit bei uns noch;

Sein’ Macht und G’walt unendlich ist,

Wahr’r Gott und Mensch zu aller Frist.

Halleluja!

 

Wohl dem, der ihm vertrauen tut

Und hat zu ihm ein’n frischen Mut.

Welt, wie du willst, wer fragt nach dir?

Nach Christo steht unsre Begier.

Halleluja!

 

Wir freuen uns aus Herzensgrund

Und singen fröhlich mit dem Mund:

Unser Bruder, Fleisch, Bein und Blut

Ist unser allerhöchstes Gut.

Halleluja!

 

Durch ihn der Himmel unser ist;

Hilf uns, o Bruder Jesu Christ,

Dass wir nur fest vertraun auf dich

Und durch dich leben ewiglich!

Halieluja!

 

The original is ascribed to Nikolaus Selnecker because a hymn of four stanzas with this beginning is found in Selnecker’s Der Psalter, at the end of Ps. 68, published in 1572. Later a form in thirteen stanzas appeared in Praetorius’s Musae Sionine, 1607, author unknown. Our hymn has Stanras 1, 3, 7, 8, and 10 of this version. The omitted stanzas read:

 

2. Now His disciples all rejoice

And sing His praise with cheerful voice:

Come, let us grateful offerings bring;

Our Brother is our God and King.

 

4. Above the heavens in glory raised,

By angel hosts forever praised,

All creatures His dominion own,

He holds an everlasting throne.

 

5. He rules and reigns at God’s right hand

And has all power at His command;

All things are subject to His rod—

The Son of Man and Son of God.

 

6. The world and sin and Satan fell

He overthrew, with death and hell;

Dispute who will His mighty reign,

He still the Victor must remain.

 

9. With deepest joy our voice we raise

And sing our grateful song of praise;

Our Brother, our own flesh and bone,

Is God and King, our Joy alone.

 

11. Amen, Amen, O Lord, we cry;

Do Thou, who art exalted high,

In Thy pure faith prererve our hearts

And shield us from all Satan’s darts.

 

12. Come, blessed Lord, to Judgment come

And take us to our glorious home

That all our woes on earth may cease

And we may dwell in heavenly peace.

 

13. A glad Amen shall close our song;

Our souls for rest in glory long,

Where we with angel hosts again

Shall sing in nobler strains Amen.

 

The translation, slightly altered, is by Matthias Loy and was included in the Ohio Lutheran Hymnal of 1880. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Weary of all trumpeting  428

 

WEIL ICH JESU SCHÄFLEIN BIN  177

The tune “Weil ich Jesu,” to which the text is wedded, first appeared in the Brüder-Choral-Buch, 1784. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WEM IN LEIDENSTAGEN  283

The tune “Wem in Leidenstagen” or “Caswall” or “Filitz,” commonly associated with this hymn, is by Friedrich Filitz and is found in his Vierstimmiges Choralbuch, Berlin, 1847, set to the Siegmund H. Oswald’s hymn beginning with that line. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WENN MEIN STÜNDLEIN VORHANDEN IST  481

The melody, “When my last hour is close at hand” (L. H. 582; Landst. 569, Naar Tid og Stund den er for Haand), [is] by Johann Wolff, who was a book printer in Frankfurt am Main. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Wenn mein Stündlein” is from Johann Wolff’s KirchenGesäng, etc., Frankfurt a. M., 1569. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WENN WIR IN HÖCHSTEN NÖTEN  257, 495, 522, 580

The melody is of French origin; possibly composed by Louis Bourgeois, a French musician of the 16th century. The melody appeared first together with Clement Marot’s song on the ten commandments. Later it was arranged for church use by the famous French musician Claude Goudimel and was set to Beza’s paraphrase of the 140th Psalm. In Germany and the Northern countries this melody was also used for Paul Eber’s hymn, “Wenn wir in höchsten Nöthen sein” (Naar vi i störste nöden staa, Landst. 220; Lutheran Hymnary, 524). [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Wenn wir in höchsten Nöten” was first published in the Genevan Psalter, 1547, and is very likely by Louis Bourgeois himself. There it was set to Clement Marot’s hymn on the Ten Commandments, beginning “Leve le coeur, ouvre l’oreille.” Fischer states that the tune already appeared in the 1540 edition of the Pseaumes with Marot’s text. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WER NUR DEN LIEBEN GOTT LÄSST WALTEN  205, 479, 563

The beautiful melody was composed by Neumark himself, especially for this hymn, and it has been slightly varied to suit the meter where the text of the original has been revised. It is claimed that hundreds of hymns have been written to this tune. James Mearns is of the opinion that it is the melody which has made this hymn so popular. When Skaar repeats Winterfeld’s criticism that “the confidence of faith, which is the keynote of the hymn, has not really found expression in this melody,” and suggests that the minor mode gives to the hymn a doleful and heart-sick character, it only means that these two men are hardly entitled to an opinion in this case. It is only an old superstition that minor chords necessarily portray sorrow and anxiety which seems to have haunted these two critics. On the other hand, the fact that no one, so far as known, has ever attempted to write a new melody for this hymn, indicates that popular sentiment considered the melody well suited to the spirit of the hymn. To be sure, it ought to be sung in its “older form.” The original rhythmic setting brings out the real spirit of the hymn. …

J. S. Bach has written a cantata upon Neumark’s melody for this hymn, and Mendelssohn made use of it in his oratorio, St. Paul. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

WER WEISS WIE NAHE MIR MEIN ENDE  111, 483

It is claimed that the melody was composed by Johan David Meier, 1692. The music for our edition in The Lutheran Hymnary has been arranged by J. Dahle. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Wer weiss, wie nahe” is by Christian Möck and was published in the Bavarian Choral-Buch, 1820, where it was set to G. Neumark’s hymn “If thou but trust in God to guide thee.” [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WERDE MUNTER  13, 230, 354, 457, 507

The melody was composed by Johann Schop, German violinist and composer, born in Hamburg at the beginning of the seventeenth century; died in his native city, 1664 or 1665. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Werde munter” is by Johann Schop and appeared in Das Dritte Zehn, Lüneburg, 1642, set to Johann Rist’s evening hymn “Werde munter, mein Gemte.” [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

What a friend we have in Jesus  385

THE famous singing evangelist, Ira D. Sankey, who conducted Gospel meetings together with D. L. Moody during the latter half of the 19th century, relates that the author of this hymn, Joseph Scriven, was born in Dublin, 1820; that he was a graduate of Trinity College, Dublin; that he came to Canada at the age of 25 years; and that he died at Fort Hope, near Lake Ontario, 1886. A friend came to visit Scriven when the latter was ill, and noticed a copy of this hymn, in which he became very much interested. When he asked who the author was, the sick man told him that he had written it to comfort his mother who was weighed down by sorrow and adversity, but that he did not plan to show it to others. It was printed in a hymn collection of 1865; later it entered into Gospel Hymns, and has since been given a place in many modern hymnals. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

What Child is this?  145

 

 

What God ordains is always good  519

Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan!

Es bleibt gerecht sein Wille;

Wie er fängt meine Sachen an,

Will ich ihm halten stille.

Er ist mein Gott, der in der Not

Mich wohl weiss zu erhalten,

Drum lass’ ich ihn nur walten.

 

Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan!

Er wird mich nicht betrügen,

Er führet mich auf rechter Bahn;

So lass’ ich mich begnügen

An seiner Huld und hab’ Geduld,

Er wird mein Unglück wenden,

Es steht in seinen Händen.

 

Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan!

Er wird mich wohl bedenken;

Er, als mein Arzt und Wundermann,

Wird mir nicht Gift einschenken

Für Arzenei; Gott ist getreu,

Drum will ich auf ihn bauen

Und seiner Güte trauen.

 

Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan!

Er ist mein Licht und Leben,

Der mir nichts Böses gannen kann;

Ich will mich ihm ergeben

In Freud’ und Leid; es kommt die Zeit,

Da öffentlich erscheinet,

Wie treulich er es meinet.

 

Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan!

Muss ich den Kelch gleich schmecken,

Der bitter ist nach meinem Wahn,

Lass’ ich mich doch nicht schrecken,

Weil doch zuletzt ich werd’ ergötzt

Mit süssem Trost im Herzen,

Da weichen alle Schmerzen.

 

Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan!

Dabei will ich verbleiben;

Es mag mich auf die rauhe Bahn

Not, Tod und Elend treiben,

So wird Gott mich ganz väterlich

In seinen Armen halten,

Drum lass’ ich ihn nur walten.

 

The German hymnologist Avenarius tells us that Samuel Rodigast wrote this hymn in 1675 for the comforting of his friend Severus Gastorius, a cantor in Jena, when Gastorius was lying ill; and that Gastorius composed the music, which is still coupled with the text, during the time of his convalescence. The hymn was first published, without music, in Erfurt and then in Das Hannoversche Gesang Buch, Goettingen, 1676. The text has certain similarities to an older hymn, beginning with the same line, ascribed to Michael Altenburg.

The translation is composite. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

The Rock, His work is perfect; For all His ways are justice: A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, Just and right is He (Deuter. 32:4).

WHILE Rodigast was in Jena, 1675, he wrote this hymn for his sick friend, Severus Gastorius, who was cantor at that place. Gastorius wrote the melody for the hymn. It was printed in the Hannover Hymn Book, Göttingen, 1676. It became the favorite hymn of Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia, and he requested that this hymn should be sung at his funeral. This was done June 11, 1840. The present English translation was taken from Miss Winkworth’s Chorale Book for England published 1863. Two stanzas have been omitted. There are at least 14 English translations. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

 

What is the world to me  446

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt

Und allen ihren Schätzen,

Wenn ich mich nur an dir,

Herr Jesu, kann ergötzen!

Dich hab’ ich einzig mir

Zur Wollust vorgestellt,

Du, du bist meine Ruh’;

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Die Welt ist wie ein Rauch,

Der in der Luft vergehet,

Und einem Schatten gleich,

Der kurze Zeit bestehet;

Mein Jesus aber bleibt,

Wenn alles bricht und fällt;

Er ist mein starker Fels,

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Die Welt sucht Ehr’ und Ruhm

Bei hocherhabnen Leuten

Und denkt nicht einmal dran,

Wie bald doch diese gleiten;

Das aber, was mein Herz

Vor andern rühmlich hält,

Ist Jesus nur allein;

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Die Welt sucht Geld und Gut

Und kann nicht eher rasten,

Sie habe denn zuvor

Den Mammon in dem Kasten;

Ich weiss ein besser Gut,

Wonach mein Herze stellt;

Ist Jesus nur mein Schatz,

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Die Welt bekümmert sich,

Im Fall sie wird verachtet,

Und wenn man ihr mit List

Nach ihren Ehren trachtet;

Ich trage Christi Schmach,

Solang es ihm gefällt;

Wenn mich mein Heiland ehrt,

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Die Welt kamn ihre Lust

Nicht hoch genug erheben,

Sie darf noch wohl dazu

Den Himmel dafür geben.

Ein andrer halt’s mit ihr,

Der von sich selbst viel hält;

Ich liebe meinen Gott,

Waa frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt,

Im Hul muss sie verschwinden;

Ihr Ansehn kann durchaus

Den blassen Tod nicht binden;

Die Güter müssen fort,

Und alle Lust verfällt.

Bleibt Jesus nur bei mir,

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt,

Mein Jesus ist mein Leben,

Mein Schatz, mein Eigentum,

Dem ich mich ganz ergeben,

Mein ganzes Himmelreich,

Und was mir sonst gefällt.

Drum sag’ ich noch einmal:

Was frag’ ich nach der Welt!

 

Georg M. Pfefferkorn wrote this hymn in 1667, according to J. Avenarius in his Liedercatechismus, Leipzig, 1714. It was included in the Stettinisches Vollständiges Gesang Buch, Alten-Stettin, 1671, but without the author’s name, and with his name in the Naumburg Gesang Buch, 1715.

It is based on 1 John 2:15-17. Its theme is “Renunciation of the World.”

The translation is by August Crull, altered.

[Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

What wondrous love  306

 

 

Whate’er my God ordains is right*  519

(See: What God ordains is always good)

 

 

When afflictions sore oppress you  256

\\

THE hymn is based upon the Gospel lesson for the second Sunday in Lent, Matthew 15:21-28. It was first printed in the hymn book published by Olearius, 1671, under the title Geistliche Singekunst. The hymn has been translated into English by Frances E. Cox, 1841. H. A. Brorson rendered the Danish translation found in Troens rare Klenodie, 1739. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

When all the world was cursed  107

Es war die ganze Welt

Von Mosis Fluch erschrecket,

Bis Sankt Johannes hat

Den Finger ausgestrecket

Auf Jesum, welchen er

Zum Heiland aller Welt

Als sein Vorläufer hat

Gezeigt und vorgestellt,

 

Vor dem er ungebor’n

Mit Freuden aufgesprungen,

Zu dem er sich bekannt

Mit unberedter Zungen

In seiner Mutter Leib

Und mit Elias’ Geist

Bei Gross’ und Kleinen ihn

Gepredigt und geweist;

 

Sieh, das ist Gottes Lamm,

Das unsre Sünde träget,

Das sich der ganzen Welt

Zum Opfer niederleget;

Sieh, das ist Gottes Lamm,

Bei dem man aller Sünd’

Vergebung, Friede, Ruh’

Und alle Gnade find’t!

 

Wohl dem, der dieses Lamm,

Das uns Johannes weiset,

Im Glauben fest ergreift

Und in dem Leben preiset!

Wer dieser Tauf’ gedenkt

Und wahre Busse übt.

Der wird von ihm auch sein

Begnadet und geliebt.

 

So gib, du grosser Gott,

Dass wir Johannis Lehre

Von Herzen nehmen an,

Dasa sich in uns bekehre,

Was bös und sündlich ist,

Bia wir nach dieser Zeit

Mit Freuden gehen ein

Zu deiner Herzlichkeit!

 

This hymn for St. John the Baptist’s Day was written by Johann G. Olearius and first published in four stanzas, according to Fischer, in his Geistliche Singe-Lust, Arnstadt, 1697. Julian, however, states that it appeared in Olearius’s Jesus! Poetische Erstlinge, etc., 1664, in five stanzas.

The translation by Paul E. Kretzmann was prepared for The Lutheran Hymnal in 1940. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

When Christmas morn is dawning  146

 

 

When earth with all its joys defeats me  479

 

 

When I survey the wondrous cross  308

UNDER the title: Crucifixion to the world, by the Cross of Christ, this hymn first appeared in Watts’ Hymns and Spiritual Songs, 1707, and again in 1709. It contained five stanzas. In various later editions the fourth stanza is commonly omitted. The hymn is based upon Galatians 6:14: “But far be it from me to glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified unto me, and I unto the world”; and Philippians 3:7: “Howbeit what things were gain to me, these have I counted loss for Christ.”—This is the most popular of all of Watts’ hymns. According to the hymnologist Julian, it is one of the four hymns of highest rank in the English language. The other three mentioned are “Awake, my soul, and with the sun,” Th. Ken (L. H. 539); “Hark, the herald angels sing,” C. Wesley (L. H. 198); and “Rock of Ages,” A. M. Toplady (L. H. 27). A doxology has been added to this hymn, but it has not been generally used. A number of attempts have been made to “improve” this hymn also, but without much success. It has been translated into many languages, among others also into Latin, of which may be mentioned R. gingham’s in “Quando admirandam Crucem,” in his Hymno. Christ. Latina, 1871. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

When in our music God is glorified  380

 

 

When in the hour of utmost need  257

Wenn wir in höchsten Nöten sein

Und wissen nicht, wo aus noch ein,

Und finden weder Hilf’ noch Rat,

Ob wir gleich sorgen früh und spat:

 

So ist dies unser Trost allein,

Dass wir zusammen insgemein

Dich rufen an, o treuer Gott,

Um Rettung aus der Angst und Not.

 

Und heben unare Aug’n und Herz

Zu dir in wahrer Reu’ und Schmerz

Und suchen der Sünd’ Vergebung

Und aller Strafen Linderung,

 

Die du verheissest gnädiglich

Allen, die darum bitten dich

Im Namen dein’s Sohns Jesu Christ,

Der unser Heil und Fürsprech ist.

 

Drum kommen wir, o Herre Gott,

Und klagen dir all unsre Not,

Weil wir jetzt stehn verlassen gar

In grosser Trübsal und Gefahr.

 

Sieh nicht an unsre Sünde gross,

Sprich uns derselb’n aus Gnaden los,

Steh uns in unserm Elend bei,

Mach uns von allen Plagen frei,

 

Auf dass von Herzen können wir

Nachmals mit Freuden danken dir,

Gehorsam sein nach deinem Wort,

Dich allzeit preisen hier und dort!

 

This hymn by Paul Eber is one of the great hymns of the Reformation Age. It is based on the Latin hyrnn by Joachim Camerarius, his former teacher at Nürnberg:

 

In tenebris nostrae et densa caligine mentis,

Cum nihil est toto pectore consilii,

Turbati erigimus, Deus, ad Te lumina cordis

Nostra, tuamque fides solius erat opem.

Tu rege consiliis actus, Pater optime, nostros,

Nostrum opus ut laudi serviat omne Tuae.

 

Eber’s hymn is based on the beautiful words of King Jehoshaphath, 2 Chron. 20:12. The exact time and circumstances of its origin are uncertain. Koch relates that “on Ascension Day, 1547, after the battle of Mühlberg, the Wittenbergers, having received a message from the captive Elector to deliver their city to the Emperor Charles V, assembled for prayer in church; and quotes a portion of the prayer by Bugenhagen which greatly resembles Eber’s hymn. But that the hymn was written then we have no proof.” Sixt, the biographer of Paul Eber, relates that three musicians in Neustadt-Brandenburg on March 30, 1552, who fell from the church tower were unharmed. They had just finished playing this chorale.

However, the earliest positive date that we have for the text is that it was published in a broadsheet at Nürnberg in 1560.

The translation is an altered form of that by Catherine Winkworth in her Lyra Germanica, second series, 1858. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THIS artless and simple, yet stirring hymn of repentance is possibly Eber’s best production and one of the most treasured hymns of the Reformation Era. It was no doubt produced under the pressure of difficult and trying circumstances in which the Evangelical Church was cast about the time of Luther’s death. This hymn has often served a blessed mission both privately and publicly. This was especially the case during the Thirty Years’ War. When the city of Pegau in Saxony had bravely held out for a long time against the Swedish army and it seemed that the city was threatened with total destruction, then, “in the hour of utmost need” salvation came through Eber’s hymn. The brave pastor, Samuel Lange, went out in full clerical garb, leading twelve white-clad boys through the ranks of the enemy to the general’s tent, where they knelt and sang this hymn: “Wenn wir in höchsten Nöthen sein,” followed by a fervent plea for the city. The general, the famous Lennart Torstensen, could not resist. Deeply moved he embraced the pastor in whom he recognized a dear comrade from his student days. The city was spared and the inhabitants were given provision. (See also notes in Vol. I, No. 31.)

In Martin Moller’s Meditationes sanctorum Patrum, 1584, this hymn is called “a beautiful prayer by the old Dr. Paul Eber, which he composed upon the words of King Jehoshaphat, 2 Chronicles 20:12: ‘Neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee’.” Koch states that Paul Eber wrote this hymn in 1547, when Emperor Charles V, following the battle of Mühlberg, marched upon Wittenberg. But the oldest source of this hymn is, according to Wackernagel, a new Betbüchlein, Dresden, 1566, though he also states in his Bibliographie that the hymn was published in a pamphlet, about 1560 in Nürnberg. It has also been advanced that this hymn has for its reference source, besides the above mentioned Bible passage, a Latin song written by Eber’s teacher, Joachim Camerarius, a professor in Leipzig. Winterfeld says: “We have here a hymn born out of a soul who in the midst of struggle and anguish is fully conscious of the fact that ‘our faith is the victory which overcometh the world.’ On this account this hymn has been so precious to our pious forebears; many thousand souls who long since have gone to rest were upheld by this hymn in times of distress.” Our English version was rendered by Miss Winkworth for her Lyra Germanica, second series, 1858. It was also printed in her Chorale Book for England, 1863. It was rendered into Danish for Hans Thomissøn’s hymn book of 1569, by an unknown translator. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

When Israel through the desert passed  231

 

 

When morning gilds the skies  85

 

 

When my last hour is close at hand  481

Wenn mein Stündlein vorhanden ist

Und soll hinfahr’n mein’ Strasse,

So g’leit’ du mich, Herr Jesu Christ,

Mit Hilf’ mich nicht verlasse!

Mein’ Seel’ an meinem letzten End’

Befehl’ ich dir in deine Händ’,

Du woll’st sie mir bewahren!

 

Mein’ Sünd’ mich werden kränken sehr,

Mein G’wissen wird mich nagen,

Denn ihr’r sind viel wie Sand am Meer;

Doch will ich nicht verzagen.

Gedenken will ich an dein’n Tod,

Herr Jesu, und dein’ Wunden rot,

Die werden mich erhalten.

 

Ich bin ein Glied an deinem Leib,

Des tröst’ ich mich von Herzen.

Von dir ich ungeschieden bleib’

In Todesnot und Schmerzen.

Wenn ich gleich sterb’, so sterb’ ich dir,

Ein ew’ges Leben hast du mir

Mit deinem Tod erworben.

 

Weil du vom Tod erstanden bist,

Werd’ ich im Grab nicht bleiben;

Mein höchster Trost dein’ Auffahrt ist,

Todsfurcht kann sie vertreiben;

Denn wo du bist, da komm’ ich hin,

Dass ich stets bei dir leb’ und bin,

Drum fahr’ ich hin mit Freuden.

 

So fahr’ ich hin zu Jesu Christ,

Mein’ Arm tu’ ich ausstrecken;

So schlaf’ ich ein und ruhe fein,

Kein Mensch kann mich aufwecken

Denn Jesus Christus, Gottes Sohn,

Der wird die Himmelstür auftun,

Mich führ’n zum ew’gen Leben.

 

Originally this hymn by Nikolaus Herman, which many consider his masterpiece, was in four stanzas and appeared in his Historien von der Sindtflut, etc., Wittenberg, 1562. It was entitled “A spiritual song in which supplication is made for a happy final hour, on the saying of Augustine:

 

Turbabor, sed non perturbabor,

Quia vulnerum Christi recordabor.”

 

Later, by combining this hymn with another by the same author and adding two stanzas by an unknown author, it was expanded to eleven stanzas. One of the added stanzas became Stanza 5 when this hymn was taken up in the Leipzig Gesang-Buch, 1582. In this form the hymn has since generally been used.

The translation is an altered form of Catherine Winkworth’s in her Christian Singers of Germany, 1869. This text was a revision of her version in her Chorale Book for England, 1863. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

ElN Geistliches Lied, darin man bitt umb ein seliges Stündlein, aus dem Spruch Augustini: Turbabor, sed non perturbabor, quia vulnerum Christi recordabor.

The hymn was published in Wittenberg in 1562. Kristof Schleupner, bishop in Baireuth, delivered ten sermons, in 1619, on this hymn, which he calls “The Holy Spirit’s battledrum, under the sound of which so many Christians have died with great courage.” This hymn has given evidence of having a wonderful power to comfort the hearts, which have fought against the fear of death or against death itself. Bible references: 1st stanza, Job 14:5, 2 Timothy 4:6, Psalm 31:6; 2nd stanza, Psalm 38: 2-4; 3rd stanza, 1 Corinthians 15:20, Ephesians 4:8, John 17:24.

The English translation is by R. Massie, 1857, somewhat altered here. The Danish translation is by Hans Thomissøn, in his Danish hymn book, 1569. It has been revised by Landstad. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

When o’er my sins I sorrow  276

Wenn meine Sünd’ mich kränken,

O mein Herr Jesu Christ,

So lass mich wohl bedenken,

Wie du gestorben bist

Und alle meine Schuldenlast

Am Stamm des heil’gen Kreuzes

Auf dich genommen hast!

 

O Wunder ohne Massen,

Wenn man’s betrachtet recht:

Es hat sich martern lassen

Der Herr für seinen Knecht;

Es hat sich selbst der wahre Gott

Für mich verlornen Menschen

Gegeben in den Tod.

 

Was kann mir denn nun schaden

Der Sünden grosse Zahl?

Ich bin bei Gott in Gnaden,

Die Schuld ist allzumal

Bezahlt durch Christi teures Blut,

Dass ich nicht mehr darf fürchten

Der Hölle Qual und Glut.

 

Drum sag’ ich dir von Herzen

Jetzt und mein Leben lang

Für deine Pein und Schmerzen,

O Jesu, Lob und Dank,

Für deine Not und Angstgeschrei,

Für dein unschuldig Sterben.

Für deine Lieb’ und Treu’.

 

Justus Gesenius first published this warm and deeply moving hymn for Lent in the Hannover Gesang Buch, 1646, in eight stanzas.

The translation of Stanza 1 is by Catherine Winkworth in her Chorale Book for England, 1863; of Stanzas 2 to 4, composite from the Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-Book, 1912. The omitted stanzas, 5 to 8, read in translation:

 

5. Then let Thy woes, Thy patience,

My heart with strength inspire

To vanquish all temptations,

And spurn all low desire;

This thought I fain would cherish most—

What pain my soul’s redemption

To Thee, O Savior, cost!

 

6. Whate’er may be the burden,

The cross here on me laid;

Be shame or want my guerdon,

I’ll bear it with Thine aid;

Give patience, give me strength to take

Thee for my bright example,

And all the world forsake.

 

7. And let me do to others

As Thou hast done to me,

Love all men as my brothers,

And serve them willinegly,

With ready heart, nor seek my own,

But as Thou, Lord, hast helped us,

From purest love alone.

 

8. And let Thy cross upbear me

With strength when I depart;

Tell me that naught can tear me

From my Redeemer’s heart,

But since my trust is in Thy grace

Thou wilt accept me yonder,

Where I shall see Thy face. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

THE author’s finest hymn, as regards depth, warmth, and finish. It was published in the Hannover Gesangbuch, 1646, and included in J. Crüger’s Praxis Pietatis Melica, 1656, and in many later collections. The English translation is taken from The Church Psalter and Hymn Book edited by the Rev. William Mercer, M. A., 1857 (earlier edition, 1854-56). Translated into Danish by I;. Rostgaard, 1742.

Justus Gesenius, D. D., son of Joachim Gesenius, pastor at Esbeck, near Lauenstein, Hannover, was born at Esbeck, July 6, 1601. He studied at the universities of Helmstedt and Jena, receiving the degree of master of arts at the latter institution, 1628. In 1629 he became pastor of the church of St. Magnus, Brunswick; in 1636 court chaplain and preacher at the cathedral in Hildesheim; and in 1642 chief court preacher, “consistorialrath,” and general superintendent of Hannover. He died at Hannover September 18, 1673.

Gesenius was an accomplished and influential theologian, a famous preacher, and distinguished himself by his efforts to further the catechetical instruction of children in his district. Together with D. Denicke he edited The Hannoverian Hymn Books of 1646-1660.—Johann Gerhard, the noted theologian, used the fifth*** stanza of this hymn every day as a means of reminding himself of the suffering and death of Jesus. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

When our heads are bowed with woe  274

THIS hymn appeared in Bishop R. Heber’s Posthumous Hymns, 1827, designated for the 16th Sunday after Trinity and based upon the Gospel Lesson for this Sunday. H. L. Bennet says: “This hymn has no peer in its presentation of Christ’s human sympathy.” It is one of the most popular of Milman’s hymns. In Bickersteth’s Christian Psalmody this hymn begins with the fifth stanza, “When the heart is sad within,” and the stanzas are given in a different order. In the original the refrain is as follows: “Gracious Son of Mary, hear.” In later versions this is changed to: “Gracious Son of David, hear (or, Jesus, Son of David, hear)”; “Jesus, loving Savior, hear”; “Jesus, Man of Sorrows, hear”; and other forms. It has been rendered into Latin by C. B. Pearson: “Tristes, orbos lacrymantes.” [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

 

When sinners see their lost condition  111

Naar Synderen ret ser sin Vaade,

I Sjælen dybt besværet gaar,

Og Jesus kommer med sin Naade

Og lægger den paa Hjertets Saar,

Da slukkes Sorgen salig ud,

Da blir der Glæde stor I Gud.

 

Naar Jesus kommer ind i Huset

Og hams den søde Hilsens Fred

Har alle Hjerter gjennemsuset,

Og sænket sig i Sjælen ned,

Da blir der stille, lyst og mildt,

Da enes atter, hvad er skilt.

 

Naar Jesus kommer ind i Landet

Og fanger Folket med sin Magt,

Og alle Hjerter have sandet

Hans Ord, og gjort med ham sin Pagt,

Da blir der lysteligt at bo

I Herrens Fred og stille Ro.

 

Naar Jesus kommer—kjært at sigen,

Der blir et ganske andet Liv,

Et sandt og elskeligt Guds Rige

Hos Smaa og Store, Mand og Viv,

Og Kjærlighed og Himlens Haab

Alt ved Guds Aand og Ord og Daab.

 

Da stilles Jammeren og Nøden,

Da brydes alle Satans Baand,

Da blir der trostefuldt i Døden,

Thi Sjælen er i Jesu Haand;

Naar vi skal vamdre Dødens Dal,

Hans Kjæp og Stav os troste skal.

 

O maatte han nu snart faa træde

Derind, hvor han er ubekjendt,

Og bringe Liv og Lys og Glæde,

At Hedenskab kan vorde endt,

Og læget alle Hjertesaar

I Kristnes Hus og Henings Gaard!

\\

This is an abridged form of the hymn by Magnus B. Landstad, first published in nine stanzas, in his Salmer og Sange til Brug med Missions-möder og Missionsfeste, 1863. John Dahle writes: “The religious fervor and depth of feeling characterizing this hymn make it one of the best Landstad hymns.” The omitted stanzas, seven to nine, read in translation:

 

7. Behold, He at the door is knocking!

Hark how He pleads our souls to win!

Who hears His voice—the door unlocking—

To sup with him He enters in!

How blest the day, my soul, how blest,

When Jesus comes to be thy Guest!

 

8. Behold, He at the door is calling;

Oh, heed, my soul, what He doth say!

Deny Him not—O thought appalling—

And turn Him not from thee away.

My soul gives answer deep within:

Thou Blessed of the Lord, come in.

 

9. Come Thou who spreadest joy and gladness,

Forever bide with me and mine

And bring to those who sit in sadness

And gloom of death Thy light divine.

A voice comes from my soul within:

Thou Blessed of the Lord, come in!

 

Like Montgomery’s hymn “Hail to the Lord’s Anointed,” this hymn is also suitable for mission services.

The translation is by Oluf H. Smeby, 1909, as altered in The Lutheran Hymnary, 1913. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THIS hymn was first printed in 1863, in Salmer og Sange til Brug ved Missions-møder og Missionfeste, compiled by M. B. Landstad. Its Biblical basis follows: Stanza 2, John 20:19-26; 5, Psalm 23:4; 7, Rev. 3:20; 8, Gen. 24:31; 9, Is. 9:2. The religious fervor and depth of feeling characterizing this hymn make it one of the best hymns from this composer. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

Where wilt Thou go since night draws near  578

Wo willst du hin, weil’s Abend ist,

O liebster Pilgrim Jesu Christ?

Komm, lass mich so glückselig sein

Und kehr’ in meinem Herzen ein!

 

Lass dich erbitten, liebster Freund,

Dieweil es ist so gut gemeint!

Du weisst, dass du zu aller Frist

Ein herzenslieber Gast mir bist.

 

Es hat der Tag sich sehr geneigt,

Die Nacht sich schon von ferne zeigt;

Drum wollest du. o wahres Licht,

Mieh Armen ja verlassen nicht!

 

Erleuchte mich, dass ich die Bahn

Zum Himmel sicher finden kann,

Damit die dunkle Sündenmacht

Mich nicht verführt noch irremacht!

 

Vor allem aus der letzten Not

Hilt mir durch einen sanften Tod!

Herr Jesu, bleib, ich halt’ dich fest;

Ich weiss, dass du mich nicht verlässt.

 

This hymn by an unknown author is from the Plönisches Gesangbuch, 1674. It is a recast of Johann Scheffler’s (Angelus Silesius’s) hymn beginning with the same line, published in his Heilige Seelen-Lust, etc., Breslau, 1657.

The translation is an altered form of that by August Crull in the Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-Book, St. Louis, 1912. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

While shepherds watched their flocks by night  147

FOR unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ, the Lord” (Luke 2:11).

A Supplement to the New Version of the Psalms, 1700 (1702), contained this hymn in a setting almost identical with that found in our Lutheran Hymnary. This was one of the few hymns which were sung at the services during that period. It is found in almost all hymn books in the English speaking countries. It has been translated into many languages. There are several Latin versions. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

 

While yet the morn is breaking  86

Dank sei Gott in der Höhe

In dieser Morgenstund’,

Durch den ich wied’r aufstehe

Vom Schlaf frisch und gesund!

Mich hatte fest gebunden

Mit Finsternis die Nacht,

Ich hab’ sie überwunden

Durch Gott, der mich bewacht.

 

Wied’rum tu’ ich dich bitten,

O Schutzherr Israel,

Du woll’st treulich behüten

Den Tag mein’n Leib und Seel’.

All’ christlich’ Obrigkeiten

Unsre Schul’ und Gemein’

In diesen bösen Zeiten

Lass dir befohlen sein!

 

Erhalt uns durch dein’ Güte

Bei guter, reiner Lehr’,

Vor Ketzerei behüte.

Streit’ für dein Wort und Ehr’,

Dass wir dich allzusammen

Loben in einem Geist,

Sprechen: Des Herren Namen

Sei gross und hoch gepreist!

 

Dem Leibe gib daneben

Nahrung und guten Fried’,

Ein g’sund und mässig Leben,

Dazu ein froh Gemüt.

Dass wir in allen Ständen

Tugend und Ehrbarkeit

Lieben und Fleiss drauf wenden

Als rechte Christenleut’.

 

Gib mildiglich dein’n Segen,

Dass wir nach dein’m Geheiss

Wandeln auf guten Wegen,

Tun unser Amt mit Fleiss

Dass ein jeder sein Netze

Auswerf’ und auf dein Wort

Sein’n Trost mit Petro setze,

So geht die Arbeit fort.

 

Wir sind die zarten Reben,

Der Weinstock selbst bist du,

Daran wir wachs’n und leben

Und bringen Frucht dazu.

Hilf, dass wir an dir bleiben

Und wachsen immer mehr,

Dein guter Geist uns treibe

Zu Werken deiner Ehr’!

 

This hymn, originally in seven stanzas, by Johannes Mühlmann was published in the Geistliche Psalmen, etc., Nürnberg, 1618, five years after his death. The translation contains Stanzas 1, 2, 5, and 6, slightly altered, by Catherine Winkworth, Chorale Book for England, 1863, and Stanzas 3 and 4, composite. The omitted Stanza 6 has been translated thus:

 

With craftiness unceasing

Strives Satan to restrain

What in Thy sight is pleasing

And for Thy Church is gain;

Yet vain is his endeavor,

For Thou, O Christ, our Lord,

Dost rule all things forever

By Thine almighty Word. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Who knows when death may overtake me?  483

Wer weiss, wie nahe mir mein Ende!

Hin geht die Zeit, her kommt der Tod.

Ach, wie geschwinde und behende

Kann kommen meine Todesnot!

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Es kann vor Nacht leicht anders werden,

Als es am frühen Morgen war;

Denn weil ich leb’ auf dieser Erden,

Leb’ ich in steter Todsgefahr.

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Herr, lehr mich stets mein End’ bedenken

Und, wenn ich einstens sterben muss,

Die Seel’ in Jesu Wunden senken

Und ja nicht sparen meine Buss’!

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Lass mich beizeit mein Haus bestellen,

Dass ich bereit sei für und für

Und sage frisch in allen Fällen:

Herr, wie du willst, so schick’s mit mir!

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Mach mir stets zuckersüss den Himmel

Und gallenbitter diese Welt;

Gib, dass mir in dem Weltgetümmel

Die Ewigkeit sei vorgestellt!

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Ach Vater, deck all meine Sünde

Mit dem Verdienste Christi zu,

Darein ich mich fest gläubig winde

Das gibt mir recht erwünschte Ruh’.

Mein Gott, ich bitt, durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Nichts ist, was mich von Jesu scheide,

Nichts, es sei Leben oder Tod.

Ich leg’ die Hand in seine Seite

Und sage: Mein Herr und mein Gott!

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Ich habe Jesum angezogen

Schon längst in meiner heil’gen Tauf’;

Du bist mir auch daher gewogen,

Hast mich zum Kind genommen auf.

Mein Gott, ich bitt, durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Ich habe Jesu Fleisch gegessen,

Ich hab’ sein Blut getrunken hier;

Nun kann er meiner nicht vergessen,

Ich bleib’ in ihm und er in mir.

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

So komm’ mein End’ heut’ oder morgen,

Ich weiss, dass mir’s mit Jesu glückt;

Ich bin und bleib’ in seinen Sorgen,

Mit Jesu Blut schön ausgeschmückt.

Mein Gott, ich bitt’ durch Christi Blut:

Mach’s nur mit meinem Ende gut!

 

Ich leb’ indes in Gott vergnüget

Und sterb’ ohn alle Kümmernis;

Mir g’nüget, wie es mein Gott füget,

Ich glaub’ und bin es ganz gewiss;

Durch deine Gnad’ und Christi Blut

Machst du’s mit meinem Ende gut!

 

This hymn, originally in twelve stanzas, is from the pen of Ämilie Juliane, countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt, although George Michael Pfefferkorn claimed it as his own. The hymn appeared in print in the Appendix of the Rudolstadt Gesang Buch, 1688, but it was written in 1686. The church library in Gera has the hymn in the handwriting of the countess, dated “Neuhaus, d. 17. Sept. 1686.”

The composite translation was prepared for The Lutheran Hymnal. The omitted seventh stanza in Miss Winkworth’s translation reads:

 

His sorrows and His cross, I know,

Make death-beds soft and light the grave,

They comfort in the hour of woe.

They give me all I fain would have.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray

Thy peace may bless my dying day.

[Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

THIS hymn appeared first in a supplement to the Rudolstadt Gesangbuch, 1688, and, like the other hymns of this collection, without the author’s name. It entered into many hymn books, in most cases with no mention of the author; but in a few instances the name of Emilie Juliane is given. In the meantime a pastor, later superintendent, G. M. Pfefferkorn, claimed to be its author. There is no evidence to support his claim, but still the question provoked considerable controversy at the time. The issue, however, was settled when the hymn was found in Emilie Juliane’s handwriting, dated Neuhaus, September 17, 1686, and a letter written by herself to Countess Magdalena Sophia von Schönburg-Hartenstein. In this letter she expressly declared that she composed this hymn (which was also attested to by her husband and many others). She is also mentioned as the authoress of this hymn in a work of 1707; further it has been proved that she herself sent it to the Rudolstadt Gesangbuch in 1688; and finally, in her favor may be mentioned the fact that this hymn resembles in spirit and in setting the poetic productions of Emilie Juliane.

The hymn has won great favor both in Lutheran and other lands. Many interesting incidents are connected with the story of this hymn. Schubert relates that a young man who frequently visited at his sister’s house was crushed to death while working in a sand pit. Previous to this it had been noticed that he had fallen into a meditative and serious mood of mind. He had often mentioned death and eternity and salvation in heaven where we shall forever praise God. Upon the day of his death he arose early, and having said his morning prayer he sang the hymn, “Who knows how near my life’s expended.” In his case the words of the second stanza of the original were fulfilled:

The world that smiled when morn was come May change for me ere close of eve;

So long as earth is still my home In peril of my death I live.

(Ev. Luth. Hymn-Book, No. 544.)

This young man had properly prepared himself at the right time and in the right manner. (Following Skaar.)

Dr. J. U. Frommann, deacon of Tübingen, repeatedly employed this hymn at his services preceding his sudden death at a vesper service, November, 1715. When the noted preacher, J. A. Bengel, had partaken of Holy Communion together with his wife and children, the tenth and eleventh stanzas (Landst. 8, 9) of this hymn were sung at his request just before he expired.

… The hymn was rendered into Danish in 1693 by Frederik Rostgaard (1671-1745), while he resided at Oxford. Rostgaard served as superior secretary of the Danish Chancery, later as superior magistrate. In Landstad’s hymn book the following numbers were translated by Rostgaard: 71, 207, 285, 333, 339, 459, 527, and 565. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

Who trusts in God, a strong abode  261

Wer Gott vertraut, hat wohl gebaut

Im Himmel und auf Erden.

Wer sich verlässt auf Jesum Christ,

Dem muss der Himmel werden.

Darum auf dich all’ Hoffnung ich

Ganz fest und steif tu’ setzen.

Herr Jesu Christ, mein Trost du bist

In Todesnot und Schmerzen.

 

Und wenn’s gleich wär’ dem Teufel sehr

Und aller Welt zuwider,

Dennoch so bist du, Jesu Christ,

Der sie all’ schlägt danieder;

Und wenn ich dich nur hab’ um mich

Mit deinem Geist und Gnaden,

So kann fürwahr mir ganz und gar

Wed’r Tod noch Teufel schaden.

 

Dein tröst’ ich mich ganz sicherlich,

Denn du kannst mir wohl geben,

Was mir ist not du treuer Gott ,

In dies’m und jenem Leben.

Gib wahre Reu’, mein Herz erneu’,

Errette Leib und Seele!

Ach höre, Herr, dies mein Begehr,

Lass meine Bitt’ nicht fehlen!

 

This hymn was originally in one stanza. It is based on Ps. 73:25, 26. Joachim Magdeburg published it in his Christliche und tröstliche Tischgesenge, etc., Erfurt, 1572, where it is a hymn for Saturday evening. Stanzas 2 and 3 are first found in Harmonia Cantionum Ecclesiasticarum, Leipzig, 1597.

The free translation is by Benjamin H. Kennedy in his Hymnologia Christiana, etc., 1863. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

WHOM have I in heaven but Thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides Thee. My flesh and my heart faileth; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever” (Psalm 73:25-26). The first stanza of the hymn was printed in Magdeburg’s Christliche und Tröstliche Tischgesänge, mit vier Stimmen, Erfurt, 1572. (A hymn for Saturday evening.) It is generally accepted that Magdeburg wrote this stanza. The two remaining stanzas were first published in Harmonia Cantionum Ecclesiasticarum, Leipzig, 1597. The hymn is found in A. Hauge’s Hymn Book: “Hvo pea Gud tror, hen sikker bor,” translated by B. C. Aegidius (Gjødesen) 1673-1733, pastor of Varnæs, near Aabenraa, who published a hymn book in 1717. … The English translation is by B. H. Kennedy, 1863 (see No. 217). [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

Whoever would be saved  39

 

 

Why should cross and trial grieve me?  377

Warum sollt’ ich mich denn grämen?

Hab’ ich doch Christum noch,

Wer will mir den nehmen?

Wer will mir den Himmel rauben,

Den mir schon Gottes Sohn

Beigelegt im Glauben?

 

Schickt er mir ein Kreuz zu tragen,

Dringt herein Angst und Pein,

Sollt’ ich drum verzagen?

Der es schickt, der wird es wenden!

Er weiss wohl, wie er soll

All mein Unglück enden.

 

Gott hat mich bei guten Tagen

Oft ergötzt: sollt’ ich jetzt

Nicht auch etwas tragen?

Fromm ist Gott und schärft mit Massen

Sein Gericht, kann mich nicht

Ganz und gar verlassen.

 

Unverzagt und ohne Grauen

Soll ein Christ, wo er ist,

Stets sich lassen schauen.

Wollt’ ihn auch der Tod aufreiben,

Soll der Mut dennoch gut

Und fein stille bleiben.

 

Kann uns doch kein Tod nicht töten,

Sondern reisst unsern Geist

Aus viel tausend Nöten,

Schleusst das Tor der bittern Leiden

Und macht Bahn, da man kann

Gehn zu Himmelsfreuden.

 

Was sind dieses Lebens Güter?

Eine Hand voller Sand,

Kummer der Gemüter.

Dort, dort sind die edlen Gaben,

Da mein Hirt, Christus, wird

Mich ohn’ Ende laben.

 

Herr, mein Hirt, Brunn aller Freuden,

Du bist mein, ich bin dein,

Niemand kann uns scheiden:

Ich bin dein, weil du dein Leben

Und dein Blut mir zugut

In den Tod gegeben.

 

Du bist mein, weil ich dich fasse

Und dich nicht, o mein Licht,

Aus dem Herzen lasse.

Lass mich, lass mich hingelangen,

Da du mich und ich dich

Leiblich werd’ umfangen!

 

This cento is composed of Stanzas 1, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, and 12 of Paul Gerhardt’s longer hymn, based on Ps. 73:23, which was first published in the Berlin Gesangbuch, 1653, edited by Crüger and Runge. It is an unusually fine hymn of comfort. We are told that the Lutheran Salzburgers, some of whom later settled in the Colony of Georgia, 1734, sang this hymn as they marched through Swabia after their expulsion from their native land by the Roman Catholic authorities. On his death-bed Paul Gerhardt himself spoke the fifth stanza as his dying prayer, and the Paul Gerhardt Memorial Chapel in the cemetery of Gräfenhainichen bears the inscription from the first line of that stanza, in German:

 

Kann uns doch kein Tod nicht taten.

 

The composite translation is based on that by John Kelly in his Paul Gerhardt’s Spiritual Songs, 1867. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

BASED upon Psalm 73:23: “Nevertheless I am continually with Thee: Thou hast holden me by my right hand.”

This hymn was first published in Crüger-Runge’s Gesangbuch, 1653, later in Crüger’s Praxis Pietatis Melica, 1656, and other editions. This is one of Gerhardt’s most beautiful hymns. During the Salzburg emigration through Schwaben, this hymn was a source of great comfort to the people in their privations. Friederich Wilhelm of Prussia, during his last moments, in May, 1740, found consolation and encouragement in the words of this hymn. Paul Gerhardt himself recited the words of the fourth stanza of our version, when he lay upon his death bed. The present English translation was rendered by Angelo A. Benson, 1862. It contains stanzas 1, 4, 7, 8, 11, and 12 of the original. A Danish translation, “Hvorfor skulde jeg mig græmme?” found a place in Evangelisk-Christelig Salmebog (No. 103). [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

Wide open are Thy hands  265

\\

 

WIE LIEBLICH IST DER MAIEN  464

 

 

WIE SCHÖN LEUCHTET  6, 27, 142, 167, 348

The melody is by Philipp Nicolai for his hymn, “Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern” (How lovely shines the Morning Star), 1599. It is supposed to have been adapted from an older one used for “Jauchzet dem Herren alle Land.” It has been called the Queen of Chorales, and it deserves this title. It has a beauty and solemn charm of its own. From generation to generation it has resounded from the belfries of the churches of Germany. … The present hymn marks the transition in [Nicolai’s] hymn-writing from the objective and proper church poetry to the more subjective and spiritualizing type. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

WIE SOLL ICH DICH EMPFANGEN  94

The tune, “Wie soll ich dich,” was written for this hymn “O how shall I receive Thee” of Gerhardt’s by Johnn Crüger and appeared with the hymn’s first publication in 1653. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Wilt Thou forgive  498

 

WINCHESTER NEW  31, 280

The tune Winchester New is found in the Musicalisch Hand-Buch, published in Hamburg, 1690, where it was set to the hymn “Wer nur den lieben Gott lsst walten,” by Georg Neumark. (See Hymn No. 518.) The composer is unknown. The tune is also called Frankfort or Crasselius. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WINCHESTER OLD  147

The melody of this hymn is classed among the oldest of English church tunes. It has been called “Winchester Old” and was printed in 1592 by Thomas Este (Est), a London publisher (1588-1624). He changed his name to Snodham. In 1592 he published a book with the following title: The Whole Book of Psalms with Their Wonted Tunes as They are Sung in Churches, Composed Into Four Parts. Este’s Psalter contains 57 melodies. Among the 9 new melodies entered are “Winchester Old” and “Windsor.” [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune Winchester Old first appeared in The Whole Book of Psalms, Thomas Este, 1592, set to a metrical version of Ps. 84 and ascribed to G. Kirby. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WIR DANKEN DIR  275

The tune “Wir danken dir” is from the Collection Bergkreyen Wittenberg, 1562. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WIR GLAUBEN ALL (DARMSTADT)  37

The oldest version of this melody is found in the Darmstadt Gesangbuch of 1699. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The tune “Wir glauben all’ an einen Gott” was originally set to this hymn in the Kirchengesangbuch, Darmstadt, 1699. It was recast, however, in Dretzel’s Choral-Buch, 1731, and in this form it is most widely used. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WIR GLAUBEN ALL (LUTHER)  38

The melody is not by Luther, as some have thought. It dates from the Middle Ages. It is found in manuscripts from the 15th century with both German and Latin texts. One such copy is kept in the library of Breslau. Johann Walther modified the old melody to suit Luther’s version of the text. It was arranged by Walther for four-part chorus. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

The second tune is based upon the old Latin Credo in use at least as early as 1300. It is not certain whether Luther or his friend Johann Walther recast the tune for this hymn. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WIR HATTEN GEBAUET  146

 

With all my heart I love Thee, Lord*  406

(See: Lord, Thee I love with all my heart)

 

 

With broken heart and contrite sigh  455

BUT the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote his breast, saying, God, be Thou merciful to me a sinner” (Luke 18:13).

With this text in mind (The Gospel lesson for the Eleventh Sunday after Trinity) Elven wrote this hymn. He says himself that this hymn came to him like an inspiration while he was conducting revival meetings in a Baptist church of Bury St. Edmunds, England, in January, 1852. As far as can be ascertained, this is the only hymn written by Elven. It has been given a place in many hymn books. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

With the Lord begin thy task  82

Fang dein Werk mit Jesu an,

Jesus hat’s in Händen.

Jesum ruf zum Beistand an,

Jesus wird’s wohl enden.

Steh mit Jesu morgens auf,

Geh mit Jesu schlafen,

Führ mit Jesu deinen Lauf,

Lasse Jesum schaffen!

 

Morgens soll der Anfang sein,

Jesum anzubeten,

Dass er woll’ dein Helfer sein

Stets in deinen Nöten.

Morgens, abends und bei Nacht

Will er stehn zur Seiten,

Wenn des Satans List und Macht

Dich sucht zu bestreiten.

 

Wenn dein Jesus mit dir ist,

Lass die Feinde wüten!

Er wird dich vor ihrer List

Sehützen und behüten.

Setz nur das Vertrauen dein

In sein’ Allmachtshände

Und glaub’ sicher dass allein

Er dein Unglück wende!

 

Wenn denn deine Sach’ also,

Mit Gott angefangen,

Ei, so hat es keine Not,

Wirst den Zweck erlangen:

Es wird folgen Glück und Heil

Hier in diesem Leben,

Endlich wird dir Gott dein Teil

Auch im Himmel geben.

 

Nun, Herr Jesu, all mein’ Sach’

Sei dir übergeben;

Es nach deinem Willen mach’

Auch im Tod und Leben!

All mein Werk greif’ ich jetzt an,

Jesu, in dein’m Namen;

Lass es doch sein wohlgetan!

Ich sprech’ darauf: Amen.

 

The author of this hymn is unknown. It is fonnd in Morgen- und Abendsegen, Waldenburg, 1734. It is entitled “Jesus the Most Faithful Companion and Helper in the Land.”

Our translation was prepared for The Lutheran Hymnal in 1937. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

With trembling awe the chosen three  225

THE transfiguration on the mount (Matt. 17:1-9). This hymn has been taken from the Supplement to the Psalms and Hymns, 1867. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

Within the Father’s house  185

THIS Epiphany hymn was first published in The 1 Parish Hymn Book, 1863. [The author is] James Russell Woodford. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

WO GOTT ZUM HAUS  173, 190, 234

The tune “Wo Gott zum Haus” is from Klug’s Geistliche Lieder, Wittenberg, 1535, where it was set to the hymn on Ps. 127, “Wo Gott zum Haus nicht gibt sein’ Gunst,” ascribed to Johann Kohlross. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

WOLVERHAMPTON  364

The melody (Wolverhampton) was composed by Richard Redhead (b. 1820, d. 1901). It was first published in his Church Hymn Tunes, 1853. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

WONDROUS LOVE  306

 

 

WOODWORTH  319

The tune “Woodworth” is undoubtedly the most popular of William B. Bradbury’s tunes. It first appeared in Psalmistra, 1849. H. Augustine Smith says that it is one of the tunes “that mark the transition from Lowell Mason’s more churchly tunes to the livelier Gospel songs that followed.” If sung in moderate time, with due regard to the phrasing, the overemphasis of its rhythmic character can be avoided. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Ye lands, to the Lord  56

Al verden nu raabe for Herren med Fryd,

Lovet være Gud!

Træd frem for hans ansigt med sang og jubellyd,

Guds menighed love nu Herren!

 

Kom, kjend Gud, din herre, du intet selv formaar,

Lovet være Gud!

Han, han har dig gjort til sit folk og fødes faar,

Guds menighed love nu Herren!

 

Gaar ind ad hams porte med lov og takkesang,

Lovet være Gud!

Velsigner, høilover evindelig hans navn,

Guds menighed love nu Herren!

 

Guds godhed og miskundhed er ny i evighed,

Lovet være Gud!

Fra slegt og til slegt skal hans sandhed vare ved,

Guds menighed love nu Herren!

 

This Norwegian hymn by Ulrik V. Koren was first published in 1874 as a metrical version of Ps. 100. The translation is that by Mrs. Harriet Reynolds Spaeth, written in 1898, published in The Lutheran Hymnary, 1913, in an altered form. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

REV. U. V. KOREN was intensely interested in church music. He became the leader in the work of compiling the hymn book for the Norwegian Synod. In this edition the above-mentioned hymn was first published in 1874. This happy version of the 100th Psalm of David, together with his translation of “Dies irae, dies illa” (Hymn bk. of Norw. Synod 54), and his revisions of a number of hymns, show his unusual ability to strike the true spirit of the church hymn. They bear witness of his aesthetic taste and marked sense of rhythm and euphony. His hymn paraphrase was entered into G. Jensen’s “Utkast til ny Salmebog” for the Church of Norway, but later omitted by the committee in charge. For the revised edition of the hymn book for the Norwegian Synod, Dr. Koren rewrote several hymns, making them better suited for church use. He was also very musical and keenly interested in the older rhythmic form of church music. At his suggestion was published the Rythmisk Koralbog, which had some influence upon the composition of The Lutheran Hymnary. The English translation of Dr. Koren’s hymn is by Mrs. Harriet R. Spaeth, 1898. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]

 

 

Ye parents, hear what Jesus taught  186

Höret, ihr Eltern, Christus spricht:

Den Kindlein sollt ihr wehren nicht,

Dass sie sich meinen Armen nahn,

Denn ich will segnend sie empfahn.

 

Gehorehet ihm und bringt sie her,

Dass man von Jugend auf sie lehr’

In Kirchen und in Schulen wohl,

Wie man Gott gläubig ehren soll!

 

Habt ihr sie lieb mit treuem Sinn,

So führet sie zu Jesu hin.

Wer dies nicht tut, ist ihnen feind,

Wie gross auch seine Liebe scheint.

 

This is a rather free translation of a cento from Ludwig Helmbold’s hymn “Höret, ihr Eltern, Christus spricht” (sometimes given “Ihr Eltern, hört, was Christus spricht”). It first appeared in the author’s Crepundia Sacra, Mühlhausen, 1596. The cento, translated by William M. Czamanske for The Lutherarn Hymnal, in 1939, includes Stanzas 1, 4, and 5 of the author’s original six stanzas. Aside from its value as a reminder of the parental duty to bring up the children in the nurture of the Lord, the hymn has little to commend itself. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Ye sons and daughters of the King  366

O filii et filiae,

Rex caelestis, Rex gloriae,

Morte revixit hodie.

Alleluia!

 

Et Maria Magdalene

Et Iacobi et Salome

Venerunt corpus ungere.

Alleluia!

 

In albis sedens angelus

Praedixit mulieribus,

“In Galilaea est Dominus.”

Alleluia!

 

Discipulis adstantibus

In medio stetit Christus,

Dicens, “Pax vobis omnibus.”

Alleluia!

 

Postquem audivit Didymus

Quia surrexerat Iesus,

Remansit fide dubius.

Alleluia!

 

“Vide, Thoma, vide latus,

Vide pedes, vide manus;

Noli esse incredulus.”

Alleluia!

 

Quando Thomas vidit Christum,

Pedes, latus suum, manus,

Dixit, “Tu es Deus meus.”

Alleluia!

 

Beati, qui non viderunt

Et firmiter crediderunt;

Vitam aeternam habebunt.

Alleluia!

 

In hoc festo sanctissimo

Sit laus et iubilatio:

Benedicamus Domino.

Allelula!

 

Ex quibus nos humillimas,

Devotas atque debitas

Deo dicamus gratias.

Alleluia!

 

There is still some uncertainty as to the authorship of this hymn. Julian dates it not earlier than the 17th century. The earliest known text is in the Office de la Semaine Sainte, Paris, 1674. The historical edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern attributes some of the stanzas to Jean Tisserand, a Franciscan friar, who died in Paris 1494 and whose verses were published in a booklet between 1518 and 1536.

The translation is by John M. Neale in his Medieval Hymns, 1851. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Ye watchers and ye holy ones  540

John A. L. Riley contributed this hymn to The English Hymnal, 1906. The hymn has rapidly become a favorite in the English-speaking world. Perhaps this is due in part to its union with the fine old chorale tune “Lasst uns erfreuen.” Like Luther’s “Vater unser,” see Hymn No. 458, this tune is especially fitted for men’s voices. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Yea, as I live, Jehovah saith*  417

(See: So truly as I live, God saith)

 

YIGDAL (LEONI*)  69

The tune “Yigdal” or “Leoni” was obtained by Olivers from Meyer Leon, as stated above. It is probably of seventeenth-century origin. It is said that Meyer Leon, a cantor in the Duke’s Place Synagog in London, who had a wide reputation as a singer, was dismissed from the synagog for taking part in a performance of the Messiah. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Zion mourns in fear and anguish  550

Zion klagt mit Angst und Schmerzen,

Zion, Gottes werte Stadt,

Die er trägt in seinem Herzen,

Die er sich erwählet hat.

Ach, spricht sie, wie hat mein Gott

Mich verlassen in der Not

Und lässt mich so harte pressen!

Meiner hat er ganz vergessen.

 

Der Gott, der mir hat versprochen

Seinen Beistand jederzeit,

Der lässt sich vergebens suchen

Jetzt in meiner Traurigkeit.

Ach, will er denn für und für

Grausam zürnen über mir?

Kann und will er sich der Armen

Jetzt nicht wie vorhin erbarmen?

 

Zion, o du Vielgeliebte!

Sprach zu ihr des Herren Mund,

Zwar du bist Jetzt die Betzübte,

Seel’ und Geist ist dir verwund’t;

Doch stell alles Trauern ein!

Wo mag eine Mutter sein,

Die ihr eigen Kind kann hassen

Und aus ihrer Sorge lassen?

 

Lass dich nicht den Satan blenden,

Der sonst nichts als schrecken kann!

Siehe, hier in meinen Händen

Hab’ ich dich geschrieben an.

Wie mag es denn anders sein?

Ich muss Ja gedenken dein;

 

Deine Mauern will ich bauen

Und dich fort und fort anschauen.

Du bist mir stets vor den Augen,

Du liegst mir in meinem Schoss

Wie die Kindlein, die noch saugen,

Meine Treu’ zu dir ist gross.

Mich und dich soll keine Zeit,

Keine Not, Gefahr noch Streit,

Ja der Satan selbst nicht scheiden!

Bleib getreu in allen Leiden!

 

This hymn of Johann Heermann’s, based on Is. 49:14-17, first appeared in his Devoti Musica Cordis, Breslau, 1636, in six stanzas.

The translation is by Catherine Winkworth in her Christian Singers of Germany, 1869, altered. The omitted fourth stanza reads:

 

And if thou couldst find a mother

Who forgot her infant’s claim

Or whose wrath her love could smother,

Yet would I be still the same;

For My truth is pledged to thee,

Zion, thou art dear to Me;

I within My heart have set thee,

And I never can forget thee. [Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal]

 

Zion, to thy Savior singing  321

SEQUENTIA in festo corporis Christi. This is one of the four “sequences” which were retained in the revised edition of the Roman Missale of 1570. Pope Urban IV, in the year 1264, ordered the general observance of the festival Festum corporis Domini (Corpus Christi). The liturgical service used at Corpus Christi feast was prepared by Thomas Aquinas at the appointment of Urban IV. The original sequence contained 9 six-lined stanzas, 2 eight-lined, and 1 ten-lined. It is found in the German, French, and English missals from the 13th and 14th centuries. Portions of the hymn have frequently been used for “processions” and other festal occasions. There are a great number of translations of this hymn, or centos based upon various portions of the hymn; in all, about 32. The English rendering in The Lutheran Hymnary is by A. R. Thompson, 1883. This is a very free version of stanzas 1-4, 11 and 12. Landstad’s translation includes all 12 stanzas of the original hymn. [Dahle, Library of Christians Hymns]