Home > Lutheran Hymns > Praise the Lord! Beautiful Contemporary Setting of a Gerhardt Hymn

Praise the Lord! Beautiful Contemporary Setting of a Gerhardt Hymn

March 6th, 2011
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This presentation of Paul Gerhardt’s hymn really helps you see how beautifully his German poetry is. You don’t have to know German to see the rhyming and lyrical qualities of original Gerhardt hymnody. I’ll give you the video performance first, and I’m working on getting an English translation, with the German original after it. I’ll put the German in the extended entry, so just click through to read it.

English Translation
The use of the word “Jehovah” nice preserves the two-syllable of the original German word: Herren/Lord.

Praise ye Jehovah,
All ye men who fear Him!
Let us with gladness to His name be singing,
Be thanks and praises to His altar bringing.
Praise ye Jehovah!

The life we’re living
Who is ever giving;
Care all the night who like a father taketh,
And who with gladness us from sleep awaketh.
Praise ye Jehovah!

That we enjoy them,
And can still employ them,
Our mind and senses and our every member,
Thanks do we owe for this let us remember.
Praise ye Jehovah!

By flames o’erpowering,
Us and ours devouring,
From house and homestead that we’ve not been driven
We owe it to the care of God in Heaven.
Praise ye Jehovah!

That no thief, breaking
Through our doors and taking
Our property, and us assaulting hurt us,
Is that He sent His angels to support us.
Praise ye Jehovah!

Oh, faithful Saviour!
Fount of every favour!
Ah! let Thy kindness and protection hover,
By day and night our life at all times over.
Praise ye Jehovah!

Deign, Lord, to hear us,
And to-day be near us!
Supported by Thy grace, may nought e’er hinder
Our progress; and, in need, help speedy render.
Praise ye Jehovah!

Our will subduing,
Make us Thine be doing,
Teach us to labour faithfully; whenever
Beneath the load we’re sinking, then deliver.
Praise ye Jehovah!

Do Thou direct us
When Thou dost afflict us,
That we may never mock; but be preparing
Before Thy throne hereafter for appearing.
Praise ye Jehovah!

And all true-hearted
Who’re by grace converted
Wilt Thou, Lord, come for, and by grace be bringing
Where all Thine angels evermore are singing,
Praise ye Jehovah!

Paul Gerhardt’s Spiritual Songs, 1867

Lobet den Herren alle, die ihn fürchten!

[109] 1.

Lobet den Herren

Alle, die ihn fürchten!

Laßt uns mit Freuden seinem Namen singen

Und Preis und Dank zu seinem Altar bringen!

Lobet den Herren!


Der unser Leben,

Das er uns hat geben,

In dieser Nacht so väterlich bedecket

Und aus dem Schlaf uns fröhlich auferwecket.

Lobet den Herren!


Daß unsre Sinnen

Wir noch brauchen können

Und Händ und Füße, Zung und Lippen regen,

Das haben wir zu danken seinem Segen.

Lobet den Herren!

[110] 4.

Daß Feuersflammen

Uns nicht allzusammen

Mit unsern Häusern unversehns gefressen,

Das machts, daß wir in seinem Schoß gesessen.

Lobet den Herren!


Daß Dieb und Räuber

Unser Gut und Leiber

Nicht angetast’t und grausamlich verletzet,

Dawider hat sein Engel sich gesetzet.

Lobet den Herren!


O treuer Hüter,

Brunnen aller Güter,

Ach laß doch ferner über unser Leben

Bei Tag und Nacht dein Hut und Güte schweben.

Lobet den Herren!


Gib, daß wir heute,

Herr, durch dein Geleite

Auf unsern Wegen unverhindert gehen

Und überall in deiner Gnade stehen.

Lobet den Herren!


Treib unsern Willen,

Dein Wort zu erfüllen,

Lehr uns verrichten heilige Geschäfte,

Und wo wir schwach sind, da gib du uns Kräfte.

Lobet den Herren!


Richt unsre Herzen,

Daß wir ja nicht scherzen

Mit deinen Strafen, sondern fromm zu werden

Vor deiner Zukunft uns bemühn auf Erden.

Lobet den Herren!

[111] 10.

Herr, du wirst kommen

Und alle deine Frommen,

Die sich bekehren, gnädig dahin bringen,

Da alle Engel ewig, ewig singen:

Lobet den Herren!
Paul Gerhardt: Dichtungen und Schriften, München 1957, S. 109-111.


Literatur · Gedicht · Deutsche Literatur

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Categories: Lutheran Hymns
  1. Terry
    March 6th, 2011 at 17:34 | #1

    A delightful, engaging melody. I love it. Thanks for posting it.

  2. Jim Lowitzer
    March 6th, 2011 at 19:18 | #2

    Is there someplace we can go for permissions and a copy of the music?

  3. Ed Livingston
    March 6th, 2011 at 22:11 | #3


    This is a really great hymn to sing. Is it published with words and music?


  4. Ken Howes
    March 6th, 2011 at 22:47 | #4

    That really is wonderful. Do you think CPH might publish it? There is a young lady in our congregation who I think could do a great job singing this.

  5. Sven Wagschal
    March 7th, 2011 at 00:11 | #5

    The funny thing is, in all our recent hymnals the first stanza is changed to “Lobet den Herren, alle, die ihn ehren.” Of course this was done to create a rhyme as it is in the starting line of all the other nine verses, but one has to wonder why the author himself did not formulate this consonance in the first place.

  6. March 7th, 2011 at 10:17 | #6

    Does anyone know who the artist is? I’ve been trying to find out for a while. You can find her singing a number of German hymns at Sermon-Online.de, but no where on the site (to my knowledge) does it list what her name is.

  7. John Maxfield
    March 7th, 2011 at 11:36 | #7

    Very nice setting, but the vocalist is too “cutesy”–all the scooping.

  8. Michael Zamzow
    March 7th, 2011 at 17:10 | #9

    @ Sven–From what I have been able to ascertain, the earliest prints have the text, “die ihn fuerchten.” It baffles me also, since Gerhardt is such a master of rhyme, even within lines. You might want to check out a Google Book which is a 19th century critical edition of Gerhardt’s hymns here.
    The text is changed to “ehren” rather soon after Gerhardt’s death. Perhaps the non-rhyming “fuerchten” is due to a Druckteufel which was dutifully replicated until corrected. I am not sure if manuscripts are extant. Go to pages 94 and 95 in the Google Book link. You will find an interesting discussion of who really wrote the melody.
    Most of all, we should soak in Gerhardt’s words and be carried by them.
    When summer comes, my heart can’t help but sing “Geh aus mein Herz und suche Freud”

    I love the verse,
    Ich selber kann und mag nicht ruh’n
    des grossen Gottes grosses Tun
    erfuellt mir alle Sinnen.
    Ich singe mit, wenn alles singt
    und lasse, was dem Hoechsten klingt
    aus meinem Herzen rinnen.

    The folk tune to that hymn might not be liked by experts, but carries the text well.
    These children sing it well.

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