Scripture Verse

There was evening, and there was morning—the first day. Genesis 1:5


Paul Gerhardt

Words: Paul Ger­hardt (1607–1676). First pub­lished in the third set of Eb­el­ing’s Pauli Ger­hardi Geist­liche An­dach­ten in 1666 under the ti­tle Morn­ing Bless­ing. The orig­in­al Ger­man had 12 vers­es; the vers­es we are fam­il­iar with are the orig­in­al verse 4 (Ev­en­ing and morn­ing) and 9 (Fa­ther, oh, hear me).

The trans­la­tion below, by Ri­chard Mas­sie (1800–1887), ap­peared in the 1857 ed­i­tion of Will­iam Mer­cer’s The Church Psal­ter and Hymn Book. Other trans­lat­ors of this hymn inc­lude John Kelly, who trans­lated all 12 vers­es in his Paul Gerhardt’s Spi­ri­tu­al Songs (Lon­don, 1867) and Her­man H. M. Brueck­ner, whose trans­la­tion ap­peared in the Am­er­i­can Lu­ther­an Hym­nal, 1930. Ironically, Brueck­ner’s trans­la­tion did not in­clude the orig­in­al verse 4 (Ev­en­ing and Morn­ing), the most fam­il­iar be­gin­ning verse.

Music: Die Güld­ne Son­ne Jo­hann G. Eb­el­ing (1637–1676) (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pic­ture of Mass­ie or Eb­el­ing (head-and-shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els), would you ?


Evening and morning, sunset and dawning,
Wealth, peace and gladness, comfort in sadness,
These are Thy works; all the glory be Thine!
Times without number, awake or in slumber,
Thine eye observes us, from danger preserves us,
Causing Thy mercy upon us to shine.

Father, O hear me, pardon and spare me;
Calm all my terrors, blot out my errors,
That by Thine eyes they may no more be scanned.
Order my goings, direct all my doings;
As it may please Thee retain or release me;
All I commit to Thy fatherly hand.