BWV 169 Gott soll allein mein Herze haben

Eighteenth Sunday after Trinity.

Poet unknown.

7. Martin Luther, verse 3 of "Nun bitten wir den Heiligen Geist," 1524 (Wackernagel, I, #208).

20 October 1726, Leipzig; Parody: 1, 5 &<--- Harpsichord Concerto in E Major, BWV 1053.

BG 33; NBA I/24.



1. Sinfonia

2. Arioso and Recit. (A)

God all alone my heart shall master.
I see, though, that the world,
Which doth its rot as priceless hold,
While it doth me so fondly court,
Would gladly all alone
Beloved be of this my soul.
But no; God all alone my heart shall master:
I find in him the highest worth.
We see, indeed,
On earth, now here, now there,
A rivulet of joy sublime
Which from the Highest's kindness welleth;
God is, indeed, the source, whose streams he ever filleth,
Where I'll draw that which for all time
Shall fill me and bring true refreshment:
God all alone my heart shall master.

3. Aria (A)

God all alone my heart shall master,
I find in him the highest worth.

    He loves me in the worst of times
    And shall, when I have come to bliss,
    With treasures of his house refresh me.

4. Recit. (A)

What is the love of God, then?
The spirit's rest,
The heart's desire and joy,
The soul's true paradise.
It shuts the gates of hell
And heaven opens wide;
It is Elijah's chariot,
Which shall lift us to heav'n above
To Abraham's own bosom.(1)

5. Aria (A)

Die in me,
World and all of thine affections,
That my breast,
While on earth yet, more and more
Here the love of God may practise;
Die in me,
Pomp and wealth and outward show,
Ye corrupted carnal motives!

6. Recit. (A)

This means that ye must too
Be to your neighbor true!
For so it stands in Scripture written:
Thou shalt love God and also neighbor.

7. Chorale (S, A, T, B)

Thou love so tender, give to us thy grace,
Let us perceive now the fire of love,
That we may sincerely love one another
And in peace and of one mind be ever.
Kyrie eleis.


1. Cf. 2 Kg. 2:11 and Lk. 16:22.


© Copyright Z. Philip Ambrose


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