BWV 116 Du Friedefürst, Herr Jesu Christ

Twenty-fifth Sunday after Trinity.

Poet unknown.

1. Jakob Ebert, verse 1 of the hymn, 1601; 2-4. based loosely on verses 2-4 respectively; 5. based loosely on verse 5 and 6; 6. verse 7 of the hymn.

26 November 1724, Leipzig.

BG 24; NBA I/24.

1. Chorus [Verse 1] (S, A, T, B)

Thou Prince of peace, Lord Jesus Christ,
True man and very God,
A helper strong in need thou art
In life as well as death.
So we alone
In thy dear name
Are to thy Father crying.

2. Aria (A)

Ah, past all telling is our woe
And this our angry judge's menace!

    Hardly can we, while in this fear,
    As thou, O Jesus, dost command,
    To God in thy dear name be crying.

3. Recit. (T)

Remember though,
O Jesus, thou art still
A Prince of peace considered!
For love thou didst desire thy word to send us.
Would then thy heart so suddenly turn from us,
Thou who such mighty help before didst show us?

4. Aria (S, T, B)

Ah, we acknowledge all our guilt
And pray for nought but to forbear
And for thy love surpassing measure.

    For broke, yea, thy forgiving heart,
    As then the fallen's pain
    To us into the world did drive thee.

5. Recit. (A)

Ah, let us by the stinging lashes
Be not too fiercely bleeding!
O God, thou who a God of order art,(1)
Thou know'st within our foe's vast rage
What cruelty and wrong abide.
Come then, so stretch therefore thy hand
O'er this alarmed and harried land.
It can the mighty foe well conquer
And us a lasting peace time offer!

6. Chorale [Verse 7] (S, A, T, B)

Illumine, too, our mind and heart
With grace thy Spirit sends,
That we not be a cause for scorn
Unto our souls' regret.
O Jesus Christ,
Alone thou art
Who can such good accomplish.

1. Cf. 1 Cor. 14:33.

© Copyright Z. Philip Ambrose

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