Who Knows When Death May Overtake Me   3 comments

Cemetery

Above:  Cemetery

Image in the Public Domain

Hymn Sources = The Lutheran Hymnal (1941), Evangelical Lutheran Synodical Conference of North America, and William Gustave Polack, The Handbook to The Lutheran Hymnal (1942)

Original German Text (1686) by Amilie Juliane, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt (1637-1706)

Composite English Translation (1941), including contributions from Catherine Winkworth (1827-1878)

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1.  Who knows when death may overtake me!

Time passes on, my end draws near.

How swiftly can my breath forsake me!

How soon can life’s last hour appear!

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray

Thy peace may bless my dying day.

2.  The world that smiled when morn was breaking

May change for me ere the close of day

For while on earth my home I’m making

Death’s threat is never far away.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray

Thy peace my bless my dying day.

3.  My end to ponder me ever

And, ere the hour of death appears,

To cast my soul on Christ, my Savior,

Nor spare repentant sighs and tears.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray

Thy peace may bless my dying day.

4.  Help me now set my house in order

That always ready I may be

To say in meekness on death’s border:

Lord, as Thou wilt, deal Thou with me.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray

Thy peace may bless my dying day.

5.  Reveal the sweetness of Thy heaven,

Earth’s galling bitterness unfold;

May I, amid this turmoil riven,

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

Thy peace may bless my dying day.

6.  My many sins blot out forever

Since Jesus has my pardon won;

In mercy robed, I then shall never

Fear death, but trust in Thee alone.

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

7.  His sorrows and His cross, I know,

Make death-beds soft and light the grave,

They comfort in the hour of woe,

They give me all I fain would have.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray

Thy peace may bless my dying day.

8.  Naught shall my soul from Jesus sever;

In faith I touch His wounded side

And hail Him as my Lord forever,

Nor life nor death shall us divide.

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

9.  Once in the blest baptismal waters

I put on Christ and made Him mine;

Now numbered with God’s sons and daughters,

I share His peace and love divine.

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

10.  His body and His blood I’ve taken

In His blest Supper, feast divine;

Now I shall never be forsaken,

For I am His, and He is mine.

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

11.  Then may death come today, tomorrow,

I know in Christ I perish not;

He grants the peace that stills all sorrow,

Gives me a robe without a spot.

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

12.  And thus I live in God contented

And die without a thought of fear;

My soul has to God’s plans consented,

For through His Son my faith is clear.

Thy blest eternity behold.

My God, for Jesus’ sake I pray.

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Cemetery Plan 1861

Above:  Cemetery Plan 1861

Image in the Public Domain

Three stanzas in the 1863 translation by Simeon Comenius Chitty (1831-1902)

Hymn Source = Hymnal and Liturgies of the Moravian Church (Unitas Fratrum) (1923), Moravian Church in America

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1.  The solemn moment is impending,

When my career shall end in death,

My course unto the grave is ending,

And soon may come my latest breath;

My God and Saviour, hear my prayer,

Me for my dying hour prepare.

2.  So teach me, Lord, my days to number

That I may wisdom’s path pursue;

That nothing may my soul encumber,

Oh, let me keep the Cross in view;

My God and Saviour, hear my prayer,

Me for my dying hour prepare.

3.  To-day let death come, or to-morrow,

I know that I in Jesus live;

Thee will I serve through joy and sorrow,

The robe of righteousness I have;

My God and Saviour, hear my prayer,

Me for my dying hour prepare.

3 responses to “Who Knows When Death May Overtake Me

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  1. Pingback: Simeon Comenius Chitty | GATHERED PRAYERS

  2. Pingback: Catherine Winkworth | GATHERED PRAYERS

  3. Pingback: Amilie Juliane, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt | GATHERED PRAYERS

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