Dear Christians, one and all, rejoice,
With exultation springing,
And with united heart and voice
And holy rapture singing,
Proclaim the wonders God has done,
How his right arm the victory won.
What price our ransom cost him!
Fast bound in Satanís chains I lay,
Death brooded darkly over me,
Sin was my torment night and day;
In sin my mother bore me.
But daily deeper still I fell;
My life became a living hell,
So firmly sin possessed me.
My own good works all came to naught,
No grace or merit gaining;
Free will against Godís judgment fought,
Dead to all good remaining.
My fears increased till sheer despair
Left only death to my share;
The pangs of hell I suffered.
But God had seen my wretched state
Before the worldís foundation,
And mindful of his mercies great,
He planned for my salvation.
He turned to me a fatherís heart;
He did not choose easy part
But gave his dearest treasure.
God said to his beloved Son:
"Itís time to have compassion.
Then go, bright jewel of my crown,
And bring to all salvation;
From sin and sorrow set them free;
Slay bitter death for them that they
May live with you forever."
The Son obeyed his Fatherís will,
Was born of virgin mother;
And Godís good pleasure to fulfill,
He came to be my brother.
His royal power disguised he bore,
A servantís form, like mine, he wore
To lead the devil captive.
To me he said: "Stay close to me,
I am your rock and castle.
Your ransom I myself will be;
For you I strive and wrestle;
For I am yours, and you are mine,
And where I am you may remain;
The foe shall not divide us.
"Though he will shed my precious blood,
Of life me thus bereaving,
All this I suffer for your good;
Be steadfast and believing.
Life will from death the victory win;
My innocence shall bear your sin;
And you are blest forever.
"Now to my Father I depart,
From earth to heaven ascending,
And heavenly wisdom to impart,
The Holy spirit sending;
In trouble he will comfort your
And teach you always to be true
And into truth shall guide you.
What I on earth have done and taught
Guide all your life and teaching;
So shall the kingdomís work be wrought
And honored in your preaching.
But watch lest foes with base alloy
The heavenly treasure should destroy;
This final word I leave you."
Hymn # 353 from Lutheran Worship
Author: Etlich Christlich lider
Tune: Nun Freut Euch
1st Published in: 1524