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Wach' auf meines Herzens Schöne

Hans Sachs

trans. by Catherine Winkworth, 1869

Awake, my heart's delight, awake

Thou Christian host, and hear

These tones that lovely music make,

God's Word most pure and clear,

That now is sweetly sounding,

While dawn is piercing through the night

Through God's dear love abounding.


The prophets' message now at last

Our ears may hear again,

Locked up therewith in silence fast

Long had the Gospel lain;

But now we hear their voices,

And many an anxious burdened soul

In freedom now rejoices.

For conscience lay oppressed and bound

By bans and men's commands,

Soul-traps and nets were all around;

But now our German lands,

Behold the sun is risen,

And those foul shapes were ghosts and lies,

And dare to burst their prison.

Christ sends us many messengers

His gospel to proclaim,

And all the realm of darkness stirs

To work them death or shame,

And quench the Truth in error;--

O Christendom, thou Bride of God,

Fear not for all their terror!

Trust thou in flattering tongues no more,

Though many they may be;

All human teachings dread thou sore,

Though good they seem to thee;

But put thy whole affiance

In God's good-will and holy Word,

There is our one reliance.


There yield thy heart and soul entire,

What it commands is good;

Where it forbids let no desire

E'er stir within thy blood;

Where it allows, maintain thou

Thy Christian freedom as Paul saith,

Yet from offence refrain thou.

The Word will save thee from the smart

Of sin and pains of hell,

If thou believe it with thy heart

No evil there can dwell;

'Twill make thee pure and holy,

And teach thee that in Jesus lies

Our hope and comfort solely.

Blest be the day and blest the hour

When thou didst see revealed

The Word of God in all its power,

The soul's true strength and shield;

Let nought to thee be dearer

In heaven or earth, no creature-love

E'er to thy heart be nearer.

O Christendom, here give thou heed,

By no false lore perplexed,

Here seek and find true life indeed

For this world and the next;

For he who dies believing

In Christ alone, shall live with Him,

His heavenly joys receiving.

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