31 December 2017

Es ist vollbracht! Gott ist verschieden

Here is my translation of the Passion Hymn, “Es ist vollbracht! Gott ist verschieden” (Salomo Franck). The meter is that of Wer nur den lieben Gott läßt walten, but a proper tune has also been published. An early instance showing the first text type is found here. I have included some of the more significant alterations for your interest.

’TIS FINISHED quite! Behold, God dieth,
My Jesus doth His eyelids close,
The Prince of peace all peaceful lieth,
The Sun of Life sinks to repose,
Yea, sinks into death’s soundless night,
O dearest word: “
’Tis finished quite!”

2 ’Tis finished quite! As God hath spoken!
Th’ eternal Word His speech withholds.
That heart with faithfulness is broken,
A rock Salvation’s Rock enfolds,
The highest pow’r is hid from sight.
O truest word: “
’Tis finished quite!”

’Tis finished quite! I am forgiven;
Hush, conscience, do not cry so sore,

Though oft our sins have cried to heaven,
The Lamb's dear blood cries all the more.
Now vanquished lies hell’s vaunted might.
O sweetest word: “
’Tis finished quite!”

’Tis finished quite! My heart's deep longing,
Round Thy dear body and Thy breast
The angels gladly would be thronging;
Oh, take my heart, Lord, for Thy rest!
Where love has carved thy tomb aright.
O soothing word: “
’Tis finished quite!”

’Tis finished quite! Here I will slumber,
And take Christ's tombstone for my bed;
Here wait the angels without number
Where I, with Jacob, lay my head.
Unbarred is heaven's portal bright:
O word of life: “
’Tis finished quite!”

Translation © 2017 Matthew Carver

1 Es ist vollbracht! Gott ist verschieden!

mein Jesus schließt die Augen zu,

Der Friedensfürst schläft ganz in Frieden;

die Lebenssonne geht zur Ruh

und sinkt in stille todesnacht,

O theures Wort: Es ist vollbracht!

2 Es ist vollbracht! wie Gott gesprochen!

das ewge Wort muß sprachlos sein.

Das Herz bei True wird gebrochen,

den Fels des Heils umfaßt ein Stein,

Die höchste Kraft ist nun verschmacht.

O wahres [werthes] Wort: Es ist vollbracht!

3 Es ist vollbracht! Schweig mein Gewissen,

Ihr Sünder schreit nicht allzusehr [. . . fasset neuen Muth!
Habt ihr die Wolken oft durchrissen [Des Tempels Vorhang ist verrissen;]

Das Blut des Lammes schreit vielmehr. [nun spricht für uns des Sohnes Blut.
Nun ist getilgt der Hölle(n) Macht.

O süßes Wort; Es ist vollbracht!

4 Es ist vollbracht! Mein Herzverlangen,

du allerliebste Leiche du; [o hochgelobte Liebe du]

die Engel wünschen zu umfangen,
 [dich wünschen Engel zu empfangen]
nimm auch in meinem Herzen Ruh,

wo Liebe dir ein Grab gemacht! [wo dir die Lieb ein Grab gemacht!
Trostvolles Wort; Es ist vollbracht!

5 Es ist vollbracht! Ich will mich legen

zur ruh auf Christi Grabesstein.

Die Engel sind allhie zugegen,

ich schlummre sanft mit [wie] Jakob ein.

Die Himmelspfort ist aufgemacht.

O Lebenswort: Es ist vollbracht!

24 November 2017

Vor Gericht Herr Christe steh ich hie

Here is my translation of an additional 4th stanza for the hymn “Herzlich lieb hab ich dich, o Herr" (M. Schalling, 1563), which adds the ideas of repentance and resolve for new obedience. The anonymous stanza, according to Wackernagel (III, 789) is found appended to the hymn in the Görlitz Gesangbuch of 1611, p. 957. It is sometimes (as in the Wisconsin German hymnal, Ev.-Luth. Gesangbuch #351) ascribed to Johann Dilherr (1604–1669), who would have been quite young at its first appearance.

BEFORE Thy court, Lord, I appear,
And kneel to Thee in heart sincere,
And own no other savior;
My sins and my trespasses sore
To death condemn me evermore
And yet I will not waver.
Lord Jesus Christ, Thy blood alone
Doth wash my sins and all atone;
In true repentance and complete
I, trusting, fall down at Thy feet.
Lord Jesus Christ! my thanks to Thee (my thanks to Thee!)
I would do better; help Thou me!

Translation © 2017 Matthew Carver.


Vor Gricht, Herr Christe, steh ich hie,
zu dir beug ich mein Hertzen Knie,
vermag mir selbst nicht zu rathen.
Mein Sünd und grosse Missethat
mich ewig zum Todt verdammet hat,
ich wil drumb nicht verzagen:
Herr Jesu Christ, dein Blut allein
macht mich von allen Sünden rein,
in rechter wahrer Rew und Buss
gläub ich an dich, fall dir zu fuß.
Herr Jesu Christ, des danck ich dir,
ich will mich bessern, Herr, hilff mir!

20 August 2017

O großer Gott von Macht

Here is my translation of the repentance hymn, “O großer Gott von Macht" (B. Schnurr, 1678, sts 1-8; J. M. Meyfart, st.9), for times of general need. This hymn, the final stanza of which Bach uses in his cantata for Trinity X, is interesting for several reasons. Its arrangement consists of six lines of original text each stanza, appealing to God’s various divine attributes for pardon and mercy to prevail over strict righteousness and to spare the people and land in the midst of some unnamed necessity; and appended to this, a two-line semi-refrain of supplication based on the progressively audacious intercessions of Abraham in Genesis 18. Note that I attempt to reproduce the rhyme scheme of the German, which perhaps unnecessarily fails to rhyme the first and third lines. But the contiguity of these lines is enhanced by the quickness of the music, so that rhymes here would be foreign to the expression. Additionally, the hymn has had several proper tunes or variant melodies over the years (Zahn 5105–5117). I include the original along with that more nearly approximating Bach's (Zahn 5105 a–b resp.). The first may be attributed to Melchior Franck (Leipzig, 1632); the second form is found in Hiller, 1798, and follows the variant originally published in Praxis Pietatis Melica (Berlin, 1661).


GREAT GOD of mighty pow’r,
Abounding in all grace,
Wilt Thou the land entire
In furious wrath erase?
What if there be some faithful still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy then afford us,
Not for our works reward us!

2 Great God of honor famed,
Far be it from Thee now
To beat with dread rebuke
Both good and evil brow!
What if there be some fifty still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy then afford us, &c.

3 Great God of counsel wise,
Let mercy now abound,
Let righteous judgment yield,
Nor so severe be found.
What if there forty-five be still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy then afford us, &c.

4 Great God of strength to save,
Regard the suff’ring land,
And from Thy scourges dire
Withdraw Thy reaching hand.
What if there be some forty still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy then afford us, &c.

5 Great God of boundless might,
From all Thy wrath relent,
As often to Thine ear
Our wretched pray’r is sent;
What if there be some thirty still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy yet afford us, &c.

6 Great God of grace renowned,
Oh, hear us as we cry,
And in Thy lofty throne
Perceive our lowly sigh!
What if there be some twenty still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy then afford us, &c.

7 Great God of act and deed,
Hear humble earth implore,
Which of Thy lenient heart
Would ask this one thing more:
What if there be but ten souls still
Which do according to Thy will?
Thy mercy then afford us, &c.

8 Great God of glorious praise,
Have sins their limit passed,
And wilt Thou in Thy rage
Destroy us all at last,
Yet may the little children still
Do right, according to Thy will,
Thy mercy then afford us,
Not for our works reward us!

9 Great God of faithfulness,
Since naught avails with Thee
But Christ, Thy Son, who stilled
Thy just hostility,
Behold His wounds, His anguish grim,
His pains and sorrows, and for Him
Thy mercy now afford us,
Not for our works reward us!

Translation © 2017 Matthew Carver. 

The German text is found here.

07 August 2017

In Gott gelaub ich, daß er hat

From Etlich Christlich Lieder, here is my translation of “In Gott gelaub ich, daß er hat” (Speratus, 1524), one of the early creedal hymns. While following the Nicene creed more closely than Luther’s shorter reworking of the medieval creedal hymn “Credimus in unum Deum,” it was soon thereafter omitted from Lutheran hymnals, perhaps because its style was considered too artful with its free use of internal rhyme (even quadruple rhyme) typical of Speratus, or because Luther viewed the familiar tune of the medieval hymn more advantageous and memorable. At the bottom, I include, below the German variant text (with some modernizations, such as an emendation to the original allusion to the release of the patriarchs from hell), is a three-stanza paraphrase by Coverdale, which ignores the complexities of the rhyme scheme.

IN ONE / true God I trust alone,
Who wrought
From nothing earth and heaven;
By none / shall my faith be undone,
By naught
From His defense be driven:
At ev’ry hour / His is the pow’r,—
He reigns above all other,
Yet bids us call Him Father,
Though foes contest, / He is my rest,
Sin, death, and hell / Must fall as well,
Though all force against Him bringing.
O Lord my God!
How gladly my heart is springing!

2. His Son / Christ Jesus, too, I own
And trust,
Conceived by th’ Holy Spirit,
Alone / whose birth no sin hath known;
Our dust
He filled with noble merit:
Was made true Man, / Born without stain
Of Mary, virgin tender,
God’s Son, our sole defender,
By sinless birth / To bring the earth
Atonement for / Our birth impure,
Access to the Father’s glory,
O Lord my God!
Who then would not come before Thee?

3. Therefore, / That He might so restore
All men,
He to the cross submitted;
Naught more / Could quench death’s hatred sore;
Yea, then
His grace all men acquitted;
Where, wrapped and laid / In tomb new-made,
The sins of all were buried,
There my sins, too, were carried!
My good He sought, / Nor of His thought;
His favor see! / How freely He
Deigns to give us this salvation!
O Lord my God!
Now surely I’m Thy possession!

4. To hell / He did descend as well,
For me,
That I might rise to heaven;
So fell / the gates before His spell,
When He
The fathers’ bonds had riven:
He broke the hold / of Satan old,
And led the triumph glorious,
His blood outpouring for us,
There is no fear / left for us here,
The devil can / harm not a man,
He has become a captive ever
O Lord my God,
Who would not long for Thy favor?

5. Although / Death gave Him such a blow,
It could not always hold Him.
For lo! / The third day sees Him go
As glory doth enfold Him;
He takes His throne / To rule His own,
And guide by Word and Spirit;
And grants me when I hear it,
To trust also, / and not let go—
My comfort’s here, / salvation dear,—
With Him now I am arisen,
O Lord my God,
Preserve my soul from death’s prison!

6. Then He / with blessing full and free
And into heav’n acended;
Promptly / to_th’ seat of Majesty
He goes,
The King eternal, splendid:
He is alone / my hope, I own;
I’ll seek no other savior,
For then I’d perish ever.
When woes invade, / who seeks for aid
From anyone / but God alone
Must abide in wrath forever.
O Lord my God!
They perish whom He helps never.

7. From thence / He’ll come, and so commence
The day
Of Judgment. None ignore Him!
All sense / All flesh, must then go hence
And lay
Their ev’ry work before Him.
Alive or dead, / both good and bad—
His judgment shall be made then,
And no excuse will aid then.
“Come unto me, / My saints are ye!”
Or “Go ye, go! / I am your foe.”
Thus will be His sentence given.
O Lord my God!
In mercy send us to heaven!

8. I trust / in God, the Holy Ghost,
One God
With Father, Son, eternal;
They must / confounded lie in dust,
Who would
Not trust this God supernal:
O Holy Ghost, / Of all things most
Grant grace, rouse, lead, enlighten!
Throught Christ, in Christ, us brighten,
Make us to live / Chaste spirits give,
That we in Thee / may eagerly
Give the name of God due glory.
O Lord my God!
In faith let us walk before Thee!

9. This too / one must believe as true,
And own:
One Church, God’s dear creation:
Though few, / abides in grace, made new,

The lone
True harbor of salvation,
Unsevered by / The devil sly,
One baptism her possession,
Forgiveness of transgression;
Also, this flesh / shall rise afresh
To endless life / beyond this strife,
Where abundant bliss is granted.
O Lord my God!
Let us be yonder transplanted!

Translation © 2011, 2017 Matthew Carver. All rights reserved.


1. In Gott  / gelaub ich, daß er hat
aus nichts
geschaffen Himmel und Erde
Kein Noth / mag mir zu fügen Spott,
er sicht,
daß er mein Bschützer werde.
Zu aller Frist,
allmächtig ist,
sein Gwalt muß man bekennen,
läßt sich ein Vater nennen,
trotz wer mir thu, / der ist mein Ruh,
Tod, Sünd und Hell, / kein Ungefell,
wider diesen Gott kan bringen,
O Herre Gott, für Freuden mein Herz thut springen.

2. Auch ist / mein Glaub an Jesum Christ,
sein Sohn,
vom heilgen Geist empfangen
Gerüst / widr all Sünden und List,
wollt stahn
darum ist er ausgegeangen.
Von edler Art, / der Jungfrau zart,
Maria hat geboren,
den Sohn Gotts auserkoren,
daß er auch mein / und jedem sein
Empfängnis und / Geburt macht gsund,
sollt ein Weg zum Vater bauen,
O Herre Gott,
wem wollt für dir immer grauen?

3. Auch daß / er leid dadurch genaß
all Welt
am Kreuz ist willig gstorben:
Nit baß  / mocht werden Todes Haß
denn hie ist Gnad erworben.
Er war gelegt / im Grab bedeckt
dardurch all Sünd begraben,
den Nutz den soll ich haben,
such nicht das sein, / sonder das mein
erkenn sein Gunst,  / daß er umsonst,
solch Gnad hat wollen zeigen,
O Herre Gott,
nun bin ich gwiß gar dein eigen.

4. Zur Hell, / nieder gestiegen schnell,
für mich
da ich darein nit fare
Ihr Stell, / zubracht mit starker Schwell,
mit sich
nam er der väter Schare
Dadurch mit Gewalt,  / der Schlangen kalt
hat er die Macht verstöret
darum sein Blut veröhret,
kein Forcht mehr sei  / uns allen bei
der Teufel kann  / nicht Schaden thun,
denn er ist ewig gefangen,
O Herre Gott,
wem wollt nach dir nicht verlangen?

5. Wiewohl  / der Tod hat ihn einmal
noch kund er ihn nicht halten:
Gwalts voll,  / am dritten Tag nun soll
ihn sein verklärte Gstalte.
Ein König frohn  / in seinem Thron,
im Geist sein Volk regieren,
das soll mein Glaub berühren,
und hangen dran / ohn Abelohn,
er ist mein Trost, / mein Heil es kost
mit ihm bin ich auferstanden,
O Herre Gott, behüt mich vor Todes Banden.

6. Auf fuhr  / nach wahrem Gottes schwur
von hinn
gen Himmel ans Vaters Seiten
sitzt zur  / Gerechten an der Kuhr,
ein König in ewig Zeiten.
Er steht für mich, / dasselb glaub ich,
soll niemand anders suchen,
daß mich nicht treff der Fluche.
Wer suchet Rath / in seiner Noth
denn nur allein / von Gott muß sein
ewiglich in seinem Zoren,
O Herre Gott, wenn du nicht hilfst, ist verloren.

7. Von dann / als ich nicht Zweifel han
er würd
am Jüngsten Tag herkommen
muß stahn, / für ihm mit seinem Thun
der Böß und auch der fromme
tot, lebendig / im Augenblick
er wird uns alle richten,
da hilft nicht Ausred tichten,
kommt her zu mir, / Erwählten ihr!
Geht weit dorthin, / denn ich Feind bin
also wird er Urtheil fellen,
O Herre Gott, erbarm dich für diesem Stellen.

8. Glauben / muß ich in heiligen
Geist, Gott
dem Vater gleich und Sohne:
Wer denn / in ihm wird nicht haben,
leidt Spott,
denn deß wird Gott nicht schonen.
O heiliger Geist,  / uns Gnaden leist,
erweck, leit und erleuchte,
durch und in Christo feuchte,
schaff lebendig / im Gemüth heilig,
daß wir in dir / mit Herzen gier
Gottes großen Namen ehren,
O Herre Gott, den Glauben wöllst in uns mehren.

9. Das soll / man auch gelauben wohl,
ein Kirch,
im Geist muß man sie kennen,
Gott holdt  / der Gnaden reichlich voll,
nicht fürcht,
daß sie der Teufel trenne.
Heilig Gemein, / die hat allein
Vergebung aller Sünde,
der Fried ist Gottes Kinden,
zuletzt behend / des Fleischs Urständ
ein Leben frei / das ewig sei,
dort in jener Welt voll Freuden,
O Herre Gott, verleih uns auch diese Weide.

COVERDALE (abridged paraphrase)

1. In God I trust, for so I must;
He hath made heaven and earth also;
My Father is he, his chylde am I;
My conforte he is, I have no mo:
In all my nede he maketh me spede;
His powre is with me alwaye,
To keepe me every daye.
There is no evell can have his wyll
Agaynst my health nor yet my wealth,
But it muste come to my furtheraunce.
He is my kynge, that ruleth all thyngo;
The devell can make no hynderaunce.

2. So do I trust on Jesu Christ,
His Sonne conceaved of the Holy Goost
Borne of Marye a virgin fre
For all my synnes to paye the cost.
For deed was he and buried truely;
The gates of hell hath ho broken,
And heaven hath he made open.
He rose truely the thyrde daye fre;
He went up ryght to the Father of myght;
And shall apeare at domes-daye:
For judge shall he all the worlde truely,
And dryve myne enemyes all awaye.

3. I also truste on the Holy Goost,
Lyke the Father and Sonne in Trenité;
My conforth best in all evell rest,
In all my nede my chefest remedie.
A Church holy I beleve truely,
Which is but one generall:
For synne can it never fall;
A company of sayncts they be. 

Of synfulnesse true forgyvenesse

Is from amonge them never.

Our fleshe verely shall ryse in glory;

So shall we lyve with God for ever.

09 May 2017

Mit Freuden zart

Here is my expansion and emendation of the Easter hymn "With High Delight Let Us Unite" (G. Vetter, d. 1599). The translation by M. Franzmann (© 1969 CPH) consisted of three stanzas, the first two and the final one. In order to illustrate the pious acrostichon (MEDIATOR IESUS) embedded in the original 13-stanza hymn, I have altered the first lines of Franzmann's stanzas and presented them here, as well as translated the ten remaining, observing the constraint of preserving the acronym.
Further information is found here.
The German is found here.
The original instance in the Bohemian Brethren hymnal, Kirchengeseng (1566).

MAY we unite with high delight
In songs of sweet jubilation!
Ye pure in heart, all bear your part,

Sing Jesus Christ, our Salvation.

To set us free forever, He

Is ris’n and sends to all earth's ends
Good news to save ev’ry nation.

2 Earth's Lord, He first from death has burst

Forth into life, all subduing.

His Enemy doth vanquished lie;

His death has been death's undoing.

“His saints shall see like victory
O'er death and grave," said He, who gave

His life for them, life renewing.

3 Deliv’rance theirs —gone are their cares,
Their hellish bonds now are broken.
From Satan’s lie and shame they fly,
By Christ their Head being woken.
To Him, their Lord, they praise accord
And gladly live, their lives to give
Of all their thanks but a token.

4 In peace, we know, as He did go
So He to life soon shall send them,
His righteousness and glorious dress
By His arising He will lend them.
Now sin and hell and death as well
Have been repealed; and He, their Shield,
Will no more let fear offend them.

5 At Calvary, upon the Tree—
He by His death there did nail them,
Now led in tow, a sorry show,
His foes as Victor must hail Him.
To heav’n again He’ll lead His train
Where ev’ry tongue, both old and young,
With hymns of praise shall regale Him.

6 To soothe our heart, He will impart
The treasures of His good favor;
He shall our flesh with life refresh,
To joy in heav’n’s bliss forever;
We will be raised with eyes amazed
To see our Lord, our limbs restored,
Our members shall perish never.

7 Our bodies now may frailly bow,
Our heavy sins may aggrieve us,
And cause us woe where’er we go,
And never here peaceful leave us,
Yet He will there give ev’ry heir
A mansion bright for our delight,
Of which naught shall bereave us.

8 Rich is the saints’ inheritance
In Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior.
Your lips employ, tell out the joy
That shall be yours now and ever!
Ye shall as one shine like the sun,
And never fade, like angels made,
Ye saints, forget this joy never!

9 Just then shall be Christ's penalty
On those who dare to defy Him—
Th’ accursèd host who proudly boast
Whose faithless hearts still deny Him.
Condemned to hell, in pain they’ll dwell
Without relief from cares and grief,
No matter how they decry Him.

10 Each faithful soul, made pure and whole,
Will know instead jubilation
For God the Son, their crown who won,
Arose for their re-creation;
He makes them new by Spirit true,
Through His dear Word; He is their Lord,
Their Rock, and their sure Salvation.

11 Such comfort free, thus brought by Thee,
Lord, give us henceforth unceasing;
Our hearts by grace uphold and brace
To bear all life's hours distressing;
That till the end our days we spend
Within Thy love, and patient prove,
And close this life in Thy blessing.

12 Until we die, this hope supply:
That joy shall be ours forever;
Then blest and well with Thee we’ll dwell,
And part from Thee, Jesus, never;
But with Thy flock hold Thee, our Rock,
And praise Thy name with loud acclaim,
Where naught from Thee shall us sever.

13 So praises ring; give thanks, and bring
To Christ our Lord adoration.
His honor speed by word and deed
To every land, every nation.

So shall His love give us above,
From misery and death set free,

All joy and full consolation.

Translation stanzas 3–12 © 2017 Matthew Carver.
Stanzas 1–2, 13, M. Franzman © 1969 (CPH), alt.

12 March 2017

O Jesu, wie ist dein Gestalt

Here is my translation of “O Jesu, wie ist dein Gestalt” (M. Franck, 1627), a hymn in 10 stanzas loosely based on the Passion hymn to the members of Christ's body traditionally ascribed to St. Bernard of Clairvaux, from which several independent hymns have also appeared in German renderings and English translations, most notably Gerhardt's “O Haupt voll Blut und Wunden,” usually sung in English as “O Sacred Head Now Wounded.” It is interesting to note that our hymn is used in BWV 1094, one of the so-called Neumeister or Arnstädter chorales discovered in 1984. That this prelude on the chorale is thought to be from the time when Bach was working in Arnstadt, in the vicinity of Gotha, makes sense, given the early inclusion of the hymn in the Gotha cantional. The complete hymn presented here manages to include the most significant ideas from Bernard’s hymn into a uniform whole, framed in the more majestic than somber melody of Philip Nicolai, “Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern.

A proper melody was also written for it by Melchior Franck and appeared in the Cantionale Sacrum, vol. 1 (Gotha, 1646), viz.:

However, the desired effect of this cantional tune is best achieved with full complement of harmonization.

O JESUS, round Thy sacred Frame
So full of suffering and shame,
I trace Thy wounds deep-riven!
Thy Body, holy, pure, and fair
Now stretched upon the Cross and bare,
Hath shed all gleam of heaven—
Thence I
Sense Thy
Love and yearning,
Freely burning,
And would love Thee,
For that love that thither drove Thee.

2 Where Thou art nailed upon the tree,
I come, and kneel this hour to see
Thy scars so freely spilling:
O God the Son, the Lamb of God!
That for my sake to Calv’ry trod
With ready heart and willing!
Let me borrow
Of Thy sorrow,
And, thus mourning,
Kiss Thy feet, Thy love returning.

3 O Jesus, though Thy Knees are frail,
Thy pledge is firm and cannot fail,
Death could not bend or break Thee;
I stand before Thy wooden throne
Desiring Thee my God to own
And as my Lord to take Thee.
Draw me
To Thee:
Let me hurry
And not tarry,
But adore Thee,
And in patience live before Thee.

4 O Jesus, how Thy Arms of grace
Are spread to all the human race,
With crimson fountains flowing!
If but the smallest droplet drains
From all the oceans of Thy veins
Upon my evildoing—
Then would
sin’s flood—
All transgressions—
Swiftly vanish;
Such its pow’r, all sin to banish.

5 O Jesus, how Thy Hands unfurled
Are seen from far across the world,
Thy grace so freely off’ring;
Oh! that I might, when sorrows throng
Or joys abound, my whole life long
Gaze on those hands of suff’ring:
Make me
With repenting
And lamenting
Here to laud Thee
And to clasp Thy noble Body!

6 O Jesus, that Thy Side so dear,
Cut open by the savage spear,
Should turn so pale and ashen!
Inside that cleft my soul would crawl
And pass into the royal hall
By gates of kingly fashion,
Whose Life
Flows rife,
Where are given
Grace and heaven,
Waters spilling,
Fonts with pure salvation filling.

7 O Jesus, Thy tormented Breast
By sting of whip and scourge oppressed,
Paid for our wicked pleasure:
The Seat of very Deity
Is made the fount of mercy free,
And stricken out of measure:
Take me,
Make me
Thine forever,
Parting never,
Guide my motion
As Thy limb with true devotion.

8 O Jesus, how Thy Heart was pained,
And in Thy faithfulness constrained
By flames of love undying,
When pangs of death Thy soul assailed,
And stings of hell against Thee railed,
Thy precious life denying!
Let my
heart fly
From all anguish
Where I languish,
Lift my spirit
And renew it by Thy merit.

9 O Jesus, how Thy Face, so scorned,
And sacred Head so cruelly thorned,
Disgrace and shame me ever!
For I deserved such mockery,
But Thou didst bear it all for me,
And wonst the Father’s favor!
Show Thy
Dear eye,
Look with kindness
On my blindness,
Grace bestowing
As on her whose tears were flowing.

10 O Jesus, vouchsafe now to come
And in me seek Thy bed and home,
All anguish hence dispelling;
Rest in my heart, Thy hallow’d shrine—
And there reside, and make it Thine—
To be Thy constant dwelling,
Till I
Will, Thy
Suff’ring sharing,
Forth be faring,
There to praise Thee
Oh, that I might now embrace Thee!

Translation © 2017 Matthew Carver.


1 O Jesu, wie ist dein Gestalt
in Marter hoch und mannigfalt,
mit wunden tief verheeret!
Der Leib von Heiligkeit so groß
Am Kreuz ist ausgespannet bloß,
hat seinen Glanz verzehret,
Ist dein Liebe,
heiß und trübe,
reich von Gaben,
die dich an das Holz erhaben.

2 Weil du denn angehäftet bist,
erscheine ich zu dieser Frist,
zu schauen deine Wunden,
die du für mich am Kreuzes Stamm,
O Gottes Sohn, o Gottes Lamm!
gar williglich empfunden:
setz mich
ohne Scheue,
doch mit Reue,
zu dein Füssen,
will aus Gegenlieb sie küssen.

3 O Jesu, schwach sind deine Knie,
doch stark die Treu, so stark, daß sie
der Tod nicht konnte neigen:
drum steh ich vor des Kreuzestron,
und will für meinem Herren schon
die Knie in Demut beugen:
Hilf mir
zu dir,
daß ich eile
und nicht weile,
dich zu lieben,
mein Herz mit Geduld zu üben.

4 O Jesu, wie sind deine Händ
zu allen Menschen hingewendt,
und tun von Purpur fliessen!
Wenn doch sich möcht ein Tröpfelein
vom hohen Meer des Blutes dein
nach meiner Schuld ergießen:
soll die Sünde,
ganz geschwinde
hier auf Erden
durch ein Strohm verschwemmet werden.

5 O Jesu, weit sind aufgetan
dein Händ, von fern man schauen kann
Genade sie ausbieten.
Ach! daß ich sollt mein ganze Zeit
in Trübsal und in Frölichkeit
der schönen Hände hüten:
doch mit Freuden
in dem Leiden
zu dir nahen
und den edlen Leib umfahen.

6 O Jesu, daß die Seite mild,
eröffnet mit dem Speere wild,
in Todesfarb verblichen:
mein Seel hat ihr gesetzet vor,
darein, wie durch ein Königstor,
zu laufen und zu kriechen:
weil dort
die Pfort,
so das Leben
uns tut geben,
weil die Quelle
den Heilbrunnen bringet helle.

7 O Jesu, dein geängste Brust
mit Geisseln hat die schnöde Lust
gebüsset und getragen:
der Gottheitstuhl ist sie bereit,
ein Kasten der Barmherzigkeit,
von höchster Pein zerschlagen:
nimm mich,
daß ich
deinem Leibe
stätig bleibe
und mit Andacht dir verbunden.

8 O Jesu, mit was großem Schmerz
bezwungen ward dein treues Herz
mit Liebesflamm umgeben,
als in dich drang des Todespein
mit Grimm, der in der Höll mag sein,
und nahm dir ab das Leben:
allen Schmerzen
in mein Herzen,
das erfreue,
meinen Geist in mir erneue.

9 O Jesu, dein klar Angesicht
geschändt, mit Dornen zugericht
das Haupt, mich ganz verhöhnen.
Denn da ich hatte das verschuldt,
erwarbst du mir des Vaters Huld,
dein wollst du nicht verschonen:
Schau mich
wie geschehen,
hast gesehen
nach dir tut mein Herz sich sehnen.

10 O Jesu, steig herab zu mir,
in mir dein Ruhbett suche dir,
ich will dich sanft begraben,
tief in meins Herzens besten Schrein,
da sollt du sein, da mußt du sein,
dein stete Stelle haben,
bis ich
mit dir leide
und abscheide,
dich zu loben.
Ach, wär ich nur bei dir droben!