June 09, 2005

78R Who Fathoms the Eternal Thought

Original Title: "Who Fathoms the Eternal Thought," John Greenleaf Whittier; ST. BERNARD, C.M., Tochter Sion (1741). Psalm 46:10 (KJV), "Be still, and know that I am God;" Psalm 100:3, "Know ye that the Lord he is God;" see also Deuteronomy 4:35, 1 Kings 18:39, Ezekiel 34:30, Exodus 18:11. Isaiah 2:11, [T]he haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day;" see also 2 Corinthians 10:5. 1 Kings 19:12, "And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice;" 1 John 4:8-16 "God is Love." Psalm 78:41, "And still again they tried God, and set bounds to the Holy One of Israel;" see also Psalms 74:17, 148:6; Job 26:10, 38:10.

ST. BERNARD (C.M)

1. Who fath-oms the E-ter-nal Thought?
Which mor-tal hath all planned?
For God is God, who need-eth not
the schemes of hu-man hand.

2. I walk with bare, hushed feet the ground
ye tread with bold-ness shod;
I dare not fix with mete and bound
the love and power of God.

3. I know not what the fu-ture hath
of mar-vel or sur-prise,
as-sured a-lone that life and death
God's mer-cy un-der-lies.

4. I know not where God's is-lands lift
their frond-ed palms in air;
I on-ly know I can-not drift
be-yond such love and care.

5. And so be-side the si-lent sea
I wait the muf-fled oar;
no harm shall ev-er come to me
on o-cean or on shore.

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December 03, 2005

205R Jesus, the Very Thought of You

Original Title: "Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee," Bernard of Clairvaux (12th Century), trans. Edward Caswall (1858), WINDSOR, C.M., Damon's Psalmes (1591); New Title: "Jesus, the Very Thought of You," rev. REH (2005), FIRST MODE MELODY, C.M.D., Thomas Tallis (1505-1585). Bernard in his time was seen as the embodiment of its ideal: that of medieval monasticism at its highest development; he is considered both a saint in the Roman and Anglican churches (he is the patron of bees, beekeepers, candles and wax). The original Latin title is "Jesu, Dulcis Memoria." Caswall was an English Anglican priest, who converted to Roman Catholicism. Neither the hymn nor the tune appears in Singing the Living Tradition, but the hymn does appear under the name "Jesus-The Very Thought to Me," to the tune ST. AGNES in The New Century Hymnal. The lyrics speak of of the Pauline epistles, who tell us to find the joy of God through Jesus. 1 Peter 1:8, Philemon 2:1-11, Romans 5:11, Philippians 2:9-11. Ephesians 3:19, "to know the love of Christ . . . that you may be filled with all the fullness of God," compare with the lyrics "Jesus ... with sweetness fills the breast."

FIRST MODE MELODY (C.M.D.)

1. Je-sus, the ve-ry thought of you
with sweet-ness fills the breast;
But sweet-er far your face to view,
and in your pre-sence rest.
Nor voice can sing, nor heart can frame,
nor can the mem-ory find
a sweet-er sound than your blest name,
bear-er of hu-man-kind!

2. When once you do vi-sit the heart,
then truth be-gins to shine,
then earth-ly van-i-ties de-part,
then kind-les love di-vine.
O Je-sus, light of all be-low,
and fount of liv-ing fire,
sur-pass-ing all the joys we know,
and all we can de-sire.

3. O Je-sus, you beau-ty im-part
of an-gel worlds a-bove;
Your name is mu-sic to the heart,
in-flam-ing it with love.
Je-sus, the ve-ry thought of you
with sweet-ness fills the breast;
But sweet-er far your face to view,
and in your pre-sence rest.

Word Score
PDF Score
Noteworthy Composer File

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January 01, 2006

342R Turn Back

Original Title: "Turn Back, O Man, Forswear Thy Foolish Ways," Clifford Bax, OLD 124TH (10.10.10.10), Genevan Psalter (1551); New Title: "Turn Back," rev. REH (2008), same hymn tune. Ezekiel 18:32 (NRSV), "For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live;" 2 Samuel 1:7-8, "Hannah wept and would not eat. Her husband Elkanah said to her, “Hannah, why do you weep? Why do you not eat? Why is your heart sad?" 2 Samuel 7:10, "And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may live in their own place, and be disturbed no more; and evildoers shall afflict them no more;" 2 Samuel 18:7-8, "The men of Israel were defeated there by the servants of David, and the slaughter there was great on that day, twenty thousand men. The battle spread over the face of all the country;" 2 Samuel 23:3-4, "One who rules over people justly, ruling in the fear of God, is like the light of morning." See also Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:2-4. The hymn appears in Singing the Living tradition as hymn no. 120 also as "Turn Back;" it differs from the words here inasmuch as the SLT version assigns earth definitively to the "neutral" pronoun "it," rather than leaving earth's gender ambiguous as here. The words below likewise do not make use of the adjective "fair" in describing the earth, unlike in SLT and in the original version.

OLD 124TH (10.10.10.10)

1. Turn back, turn back, for-swear thy fool-ish ways;
Old now is earth, and none may count the days;
Yet thou, earth's child, whose head is crowned with flame;
Still wilt not hear thine in-ner God pro-claim,
"Turn back, turn back, for-swear thy fool-ish ways."

2. Earth might be free; all peo-ple glad and wise;
Age after age our tra-gic em-pires rise;
Built while we dream, and in that dream-ing weep:
Would we but wake from out our haunt-ed sleep;
Earth might be free; all peo-ple glad and wise.

3. Earth shall be free, and all earth's peo-ple one:
Nor till that hour shall God's whole will be done.
Now, even now, once more from earth to sky;
Peals forth in joy the old un-daunt-ed cry:
"Earth shall be free and all earth's folk be one!"

All materials may be reproduced for non-profit local and congregational use. We request notification of use, in addition to notification of any changes made when materials are used so we might benefit from the insight of others. Any materials used or reproduced in any way must bear the notation "(c) 2008 Richard E. Hurst, for non-profit local and congregational use only, all other rights reserved."

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