Patterico's Pontifications

6/30/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 12, Plus a Bonus Offering Written by Patterico

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music,Music by Patterico — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is the third Sunday after Pentecost. Today we have a Bach cantata, and then a special treat: an offering to God written by yours truly, many years ago, but newly transcribed and turned into a MIDI file.

It’s probably a bad idea to put my own offering up in the same post as one from Bach. But my piece was inspired by Bach, so it’s appropriate even if it makes the contrast in quality too obvious.

Let’s start with today’s Bach cantata: “Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen” (Weeping, lamenting, worrying, fearing). This is a lovely live performance:

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 9:51-62:

Samaritan Opposition

As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. Then he and his disciples went to another village.

The Cost of Following Jesus

As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.”

Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”

He said to another man, “Follow me.”

But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”

Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”

Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.”

Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words:

Cross and crown are bound together,
struggle and reward are united.
Christians have at all times
their suffering and their enemy,
yet their comforts are Christ’s wounds.

I follow after Christ,
I will not let go of Him
in prosperity and hardship,
in life and mortality.
I kiss Christ’s shame,
I will embrace His cross.
I follow after Christ,
I will not let go of Him.

Bach used the beginning of first chorus for the Crucifixus portion of the Credo in his Mass in B minor:

That makes for a nice tie-in to my piece, which was inspired by Bach’s Mass in B minor.

The current setting of my piece is for string quartet. It’s a piece I always envisioned being sung by a choir, but I would have to transpose it to a different key (which I may do in the future) for that purpose, as the notes don’t fit the usual vocal ranges of a church choir. I warn you that it is somewhat rhythmically monotonous, but I like the various resolution of the different dissonances — and I hope that for a 2 1/2 minute piece, you find that it has an arc to it that makes up for the dirge-like rhythm.

Here is the score:

Offering

And here it is as performed by a wooden MIDI string emsemble:

I always saw it as a Kyrie, since the very beginning was inspired by the Kyrie from Bach’s B minor mass. Here are a few seconds from the Kyrie from Bach’s B minor mass so you can see the similarity of the opening:

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

4/14/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 106

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is Palm Sunday. Today’s Bach cantata is “Gottes Zeit ist die allerbeste Zeit” (God’s time is the very best time).

The video is worth watching as you listen.

Today’s Gospel reading is the passion story, as recounted in Luke 22:14-23:56:

When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.”

After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, “Take this and divide it among you. For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”

And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”

In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!” They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this.

A dispute also arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest. Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. You are those who have stood by me in my trials. And I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.”

But he replied, “Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death.”

Jesus answered, “I tell you, Peter, before the rooster crows today, you will deny three times that you know me.”

Then Jesus asked them, “When I sent you without purse, bag or sandals, did you lack anything?”

“Nothing,” they answered.

He said to them, “But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. It is written: ‘And he was numbered with the transgressors’; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfillment.”

The disciples said, “See, Lord, here are two swords.”

“That’s enough!” he replied.

Jesus Prays on the Mount of Olives

Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. 44 And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.

When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow. “Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”

Jesus Arrested

While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him, but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”

When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord, should we strike with our swords?” And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear.

But Jesus answered, “No more of this!” And he touched the man’s ear and healed him.

Then Jesus said to the chief priests, the officers of the temple guard, and the elders, who had come for him, “Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come with swords and clubs? Every day I was with you in the temple courts, and you did not lay a hand on me. But this is your hour—when darkness reigns.”

Peter Disowns Jesus

Then seizing him, they led him away and took him into the house of the high priest. Peter followed at a distance. And when some there had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and had sat down together, Peter sat down with them. A servant girl saw him seated there in the firelight. She looked closely at him and said, “This man was with him.”

But he denied it. “Woman, I don’t know him,” he said.

A little later someone else saw him and said, “You also are one of them.”

“Man, I am not!” Peter replied.

About an hour later another asserted, “Certainly this fellow was with him, for he is a Galilean.”

Peter replied, “Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!” Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.

The Guards Mock Jesus

The men who were guarding Jesus began mocking and beating him. They blindfolded him and demanded, “Prophesy! Who hit you?” And they said many other insulting things to him.

Jesus Before Pilate and Herod

At daybreak the council of the elders of the people, both the chief priests and the teachers of the law, met together, and Jesus was led before them. “If you are the Messiah,” they said, “tell us.”

Jesus answered, “If I tell you, you will not believe me, and if I asked you, you would not answer. But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the mighty God.”

They all asked, “Are you then the Son of God?”

He replied, “You say that I am.”

Then they said, “Why do we need any more testimony? We have heard it from his own lips.”

Then the whole assembly rose and led him off to Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying, “We have found this man subverting our nation. He opposes payment of taxes to Caesar and claims to be Messiah, a king.”

So Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”

But they insisted, “He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.”

On hearing this, Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean. When he learned that Jesus was under Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.

When Herod saw Jesus, he was greatly pleased, because for a long time he had been wanting to see him. From what he had heard about him, he hoped to see him perform a sign of some sort. He plied him with many questions, but Jesus gave him no answer. The chief priests and the teachers of the law were standing there, vehemently accusing him. Then Herod and his soldiers ridiculed and mocked him. Dressing him in an elegant robe, they sent him back to Pilate. That day Herod and Pilate became friends—before this they had been enemies.

Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people, and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was inciting the people to rebellion. I have examined him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against him. Neither has Herod, for he sent him back to us; as you can see, he has done nothing to deserve death. Therefore, I will punish him and then release him.”

But the whole crowd shouted, “Away with this man! Release Barabbas to us!” (Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder.)

Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again. But they kept shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”

For the third time he spoke to them: “Why? What crime has this man committed? I have found in him no grounds for the death penalty. Therefore I will have him punished and then release him.”

But with loud shouts they insistently demanded that he be crucified, and their shouts prevailed. So Pilate decided to grant their demand. He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, the one they asked for, and surrendered Jesus to their will.

The Crucifixion of Jesus

As the soldiers led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus. A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him. Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. For the time will come when you will say, ‘Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!’ Then

“‘they will say to the mountains, “Fall on us!”
and to the hills, “Cover us!”’

For if people do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed. When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

The people stood watching, and the rulers even sneered at him. They said, “He saved others; let him save himself if he is God’s Messiah, the Chosen One.”

The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar and said, “If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself.”

There was a written notice above him, which read: this is the king of the jews.

One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”

But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”

Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

The Death of Jesus

It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.

The Burial of Jesus

Now there was a man named Joseph, a member of the Council, a good and upright man, who had not consented to their decision and action. He came from the Judean town of Arimathea, and he himself was waiting for the kingdom of God. Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body. Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in a tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid. It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.

The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it. Then they went home and prepared spices and perfumes. But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment.

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words:

Into Your hands I commit my spirit, You have redeemed me, Lord, faithful God.

Today you will be with Me in Paradise.

With peace and joy I depart
in God’s will,
My heart and mind are comforted,
calm, and quiet.
As God had promised me:
death has become my sleep.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

3/31/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 5

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is the fourth Sunday in Lent. It is also the 334th anniversary of the date of Bach’s birth. Alles Gute zum Geburtstag, Herr Bach! Today’s Bach cantata is “Wo soll ich fliehen hin” (Where shall I flee).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32:

The Parable of the Lost Sheep

Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”

Then Jesus told them this parable:

The Parable of the Lost Son

Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.

“Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.

“When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ So he got up and went to his father.

“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.

“The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’

“But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.

“Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’

“The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’

“‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words, which emphasize the importance of forgiveness of sins in the Gospel:

Where shall I flee,
since I am burdened
with many great sins?
Where shall I find rescue?

. . . .

My loving Savior comforts me,
buried in His grave
are the sins I committed;
however great my transgression is,
He makes me free and clear.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

3/17/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 46

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is the second Sunday in Lent. Today’s Bach cantata is “Schauet doch und sehet, ob irgend ein Schmerz sei” (Behold and see, if there be any sorrow).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 13:31-35:

Jesus’s Sorrow for Jerusalem

At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.”

He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’ In any case, I must press on today and tomorrow and the next day—for surely no prophet can die outside Jerusalem!

“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’”

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words, echoing the Gospel reading’s lamentation for Jerusalem, and the image of Jesus gathering the righteous lovingly, like a hen gathers her chicks:

Lament then, O destroyed city of God,
you poor heap of stones and ashes!

. . . .

You did not heed Jesus’ tears,
now heed the tidal wave of passion
that you have built up over yourself,
for God, after much patience,
breaks his staff in judgment.

. . . .

Yet do not imagine, o sinners,
that Jerusalem alone
above all others is full of sin!

. . . .

Yet Jesus will, even in punishment,
be the shield and supporter of the righteous.
He gathers them as his sheep,
Lovingly, as his little chicks;
when storms of vengeance reward sinners,
He assures that the righteous live securely.

This is a beautiful cantata. Note that Bach considered the music of the initial chorus fine enough to adapt for the “Qui tollis peccata mundi” section of his Mass in b minor:

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

3/10/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 54

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is the first Sunday in Lent. Today’s Bach cantata is “Widerstehe doch der Sünde” (Just resist sin).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 4:1-13:

Jesus Is Tested in the Wilderness

Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry.

The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.”

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’”

The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.”

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’”

The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written:

“‘He will command his angels concerning you
to guard you carefully;
they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’”

Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”

When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.

The text of today’s piece is available here. It is a short piece for a solo voice, sung here by a contratenor (a male with a singing range similar to that of a female contralto). It contains these words, urging resistance to Satan and his temptations:

Just resist sin,
lest its poison seize you.
Don’t let Satan blind you;
for those who defile God’s honor
will incur a curse that is deadly.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

3/3/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Choral Movement BWV 50

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is Transfiguration Sunday. Today’s Bach piece is a choral movement thought to be part of a lost cantata, called “Nun ist das Heil und die Kraft” (Now is come salvation and strength).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 9:28-36, (37-43a):

The Transfiguration

Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”—not knowing what he said. While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!” When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words:

Now is the salvation and the power and the kingdom and the might of our God and of His Christ come, since he is cast down who accused them day and night before God.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

2/24/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 24

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is the seventh Sunday after Epiphany. Today’s Bach cantata is “Ein ungefärbt Gemüte” (An open mind).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 6:27-38:

Love for Enemies

“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.

“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

Judging Others

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words, echoing the “Golden Rule” announced by Jesus in today’s Gospel:

If you desire God as a friend,
then do not make your neighbor into an enemy
through falsehood, treachery and deceit!
A Christian
should imitate the manner of doves
and live without falsehood and tricks.
Make yourself into such an image,
as you would have your neighbor be!

Now all that you want the people to do for you, do even so for them.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

2/17/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 20

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am



It is the sixth Sunday after Epiphany. Today’s Bach cantata is “O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort” (O eternity, you word of thunder).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 6:17-26:

Blessings and Woes

He went down with them and stood on a level place. A large crowd of his disciples was there and a great number of people from all over Judea, from Jerusalem, and from the coastal region around Tyre and Sidon, who had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those troubled by impure spirits were cured, and the people all tried to touch him, because power was coming from him and healing them all.

Looking at his disciples, he said:

“Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
Blessed are you who hunger now,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
when they exclude you and insult you
and reject your name as evil,
because of the Son of Man.

“Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.

“But woe to you who are rich,
for you have already received your comfort.
Woe to you who are well fed now,
for you will go hungry.
Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will mourn and weep.
Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you,
for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words:

O eternity, you word of thunder,
o sword, that bores through the soul,
o beginning without end!
O eternity, timeless time,
I know not, before such great sorrow,
where to turn.

. . . .

Perhaps this is your last day,
no one knows when he might die.
How easily, how soon
many are dead and cold!
Even this night can
the coffin be brought to your door.
Therefore before anything else
be considerate of the health of your soul!

. . . .

O humanity,
stop immediately
loving sin and the world,
so that this torment,
where howling and teeth-gnashing are,
might not eternally plague you!
Ah, mirror yourself in that rich man,
who in his suffering
not even once
could have a drop of water!

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

2/10/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 88

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 10:20 am



It is the fifth Sunday after Epiphany. Today’s Bach cantata is “Siehe, ich will viel Fischer aussenden” (Behold, I will send out many fishers).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 5:1-11:

Jesus Calls His First Disciples

One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.

Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words:

Behold, I will send out many fishers, says the Lord, which shall angle for them. And afterwards I will send out many hunters, who shall pursue them upon all the mountains and all the hills and in all the rocky crevices.

. . . .

Jesus said to Simon:

Do not be afraid; for from now on you will catch people.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

2/3/2019

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 181

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 11:22 am



It is the fourth Sunday after Epiphany. Today’s Bach cantata is “Leichtgesinnte Flattergeister” (Light-minded frivolous spirits).

Today’s Gospel reading is Luke 4:21-30:

He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” they asked.

Jesus said to them, “Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician, heal yourself!’ And you will tell me, ‘Do here in your hometown what we have heard that you did in Capernaum.’”

“Truly I tell you,” he continued, “no prophet is accepted in his hometown. I assure you that there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s time, when the sky was shut for three and a half years and there was a severe famine throughout the land. Yet Elijah was not sent to any of them, but to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon. And there were many in Israel with leprosy in the time of Elisha the prophet, yet not one of them was cleansed—only Naaman the Syrian.”

All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him off the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.

The text of today’s piece is available here. It contains these words, criticizing the insincere and hardhearted:

Light-minded frivolous spirits
rob themselves of the Word’s power.
Belial with his offspring
seeks nevertheless to obstruct it,
so that it is of no use.

. . . .

O unfortunate condition of deluded souls,
who are, just as we, on the way;
and who yet can tell of Satan’s trickery,
as he steals the Word out of hearts,
which, blind in understanding,
neither perceive nor believe the harm?
They become hearts of stone,
so wickedly contrary,
that they scoff at their own salvation
and eventually are brought down.
Indeed Christ’s last word had such force,
that rocks themselves split open;
the angel’s hand moved the grave stone,
yes, and Moses’ staff can there
bring forth water from a cliff.
Will you, o heart, be yet harder?

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

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