Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 81
It is the fourth Sunday after Pentecost. The title of today’s Bach cantata is “Jesus schläft, was soll ich hoffen?” (Jesus sleeps, what shall I hope for?)
Today’s Gospel reading is Mark 4:35-41.
Jesus Calms the Storm
That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”
He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.
He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”
The text of today’s piece is available here. The cantata is a perfect musical companion to the Gospel reading, in which the sleeping Jesus awakens to calm the storm and protect those who believe in Him.
Jesus sleeps, what can I hope for?
. . . .
Quiet, heaving sea!
Be silent, storm and wind!
Your bounds are set for you,
so that my chosen child
will never suffer mishap.
O joy to me, my Jesus speaks a word,
my helper is awake,
so must the storm’s waves, the night of misfortune
and all trouble disappear.
Under your protection
I am safe from the storms
of all enemies.
Let Satan rage,
let the enemy fume,
Jesus stands with me.
Whether now it thunders and flashes,
whether sin and Hell terrify,
Jesus will protect me.
Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.