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August 17, 2005

145R O God, Our Help in Ages Past

Words: Isaac Watts (1719), alt.; Music: ST. ANNE (C.M.), William Croft (1708); Paraphrase of Psalm 90: 1-5.

ST. ANNE (C.M.)

1. O God, our help in a-ges past,
our hope for years to come,
our shel-ter from the stor-my blast,
and our e-ter-nal home.

2. Be-fore the hills in or-der stood,
or earth re-ceived its frame,
from ev-er-last-ing thou art God,
to end-less years the same.

3. Un-der the sha-dow of thy throne,
the saints have dwelt se-cure;
Suf-fi-cient is thine arm a-lone,
and our de-fense is sure.

4. A thou-sand a-ges in thy sight
are like an eve-ning gone;
Short as the watch that ends the night
be-fore the ris-ing sun.

5. Time, like an ev-er roll-ing stream,
bears its chil-dren a-way;
They fly, for-got-ten, as a dream
dies at the open-ing day.

6. O God, our help in a-ges past,
our hope for years to come,
be thou our guard while trou-bles last,
and our e-ter-nal home. A-men


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Posted by rehurst at August 17, 2005 03:45 AM

Comments

What does the 3rd line of vs 5 mean? They fly, forgotten, as a dream dies at the opening day.

Posted by: Harry G. Moore at April 19, 2007 11:53 AM

This is the passage from the Psalm 90 for which it is supposed to be a paraphrase:

"Thou carriest them away as with a flood; they are [as] a sleep: in the morning [they are] like grass [which] groweth up."

The idea is that they fly ("are carried away") as a "dream" (cf. "as a sleep") dies at the "opening day," a moderately poetic way of saying "at the beginning of the day."

It seems to me I have to rearrange the line in the same verse "Bears its children away" to "Its children bears away" so that it matches the music. So many changes to make.

-Richard

Posted by: Richard Hurst at August 26, 2007 09:02 PM

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