BWV 72 Alles nur nach Gottes Willen

Third Sunday after Epiphany.

Salomo Franck, Evangelisches Andachts-Opffer (Weimar, 1715); Facs: Neumann T, p. 277.

6. Margrave Albrecht von Brandenburg, verse 1 of the hymn, 1547 (Wackernagel, III, #1240).

27 January 1726, Leipzig; Parody: 1 ---> Mass in G Minor, BWV 235/2.

BG 18; NBA I/6.



1. Chorus (S, A, T, B)

All things but as God is willing,
Both in joy and deepest grief,
Both in good and evil times.
God's own will shall be my solace
Under cloud and shining sun.
All things but as God is willing,
This shall hence my motto be.(1)

2. Recit. (A)

O Christian blest who always doth his own will
In God's own will submerge, no matter what may happen,
In health and sickness!
Lord, if thou wilt,(2) must all things be obedient!
Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst bring me contentment!
Lord, if thou wilt, shall vanish all my pain!
Lord, if thou wilt, will I be well and clean!
Lord, if thou wilt, all sadness will be gladness!
Lord, if thou wilt, I'll find midst thorns a pasture!
Lord, if thou wilt, will I be blest at last!
Lord, if thou wilt, (let me express in faith this sentence
To make my soul be quiet!)
Lord, if thou wilt, I'll perish not,
Though life and limb have me forsaken,
If to my heart thy Spirit speaks this word!(3)

3. Aria (A)

With ev'rything I have and am
I'll trust myself to Jesus;

    E'en though my feeble soul and mind
    The will of God not fathom,
    Still may he lead me ever forth
    On roads of thorns and roses!

4. Recit. (B)

So now believe!
Thy Savior saith: "This will I!"(4)
He shall his gracious hand
Most willingly extend thee
When cross and suff'ring thee have frightened;
He knoweth thy distress and lifts the cross's bond,
He helps the weak
And would, the humble roof
Of poor in spirit not despising,
Therein deign graciously to enter.

5. Aria (S)

My Jesus will(5) do it, he will thy cross now sweeten.
E'en though thy heart may lie amidst much toil and trouble,
Shall it yet soft and still within his arms find rest
If him thy faith doth grasp! My Jesus will do it.

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

What my God will, be done alway,
His will, it is the best will;
To help all those he is prepared
Whose faith in him is steadfast.
He frees from want, this righteous God,
And punisheth with measure:
Who trusts in God, on him relies,
Him will he not abandon.


1. This motto is similar to one which influenced so much of Salomo Franck's poetry: mihi omnia Jesus (Augustine).

2. This ninefold anaphora, "Lord, if thou wilt," is based on the words of the leper at Mt. 8:2 from the Gospel for this day: "Domine, si vis potes me mundare." The translation of Wohl und Wehe with "health and sickness" is meant to draw attention to Jesus' miraculous healing. One may prefer "In joy and sorrow."

3. BG has a colon here to introduce the ensuing aria.

4. Cf. Mt. 8:3, Jesus' response to the leper.

5. Cf. Mt. 8:3, Jesus' response to the leper.


© Copyright Z. Philip Ambrose


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