Scripture Verse

He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. Psalm 91:11

Introduction

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Paul Gerhardt
1607–1676

Words: Paul Ger­hardt, in Prax­is Pi­e­ta­tis Me­li­ca, 3rd ed­i­tion, by Jo­hann Crü­ger, 1648 (Nun ruh­en al­le Wäl­der). Trans­lat­ed from Ger­man to Eng­lish by Ca­the­rine Wink­worth, Ly­ra Ger­ma­ni­ca (Lon­don & New York: George Newnes & Charles Scrib­ner’s Sons, 1855), pag­es 172–73.

Music: Inns­bruck Hein­rich Is­aac, 1490, pub­lished 1539. Adapt­ed and har­mo­nized by Jo­hann S. Bach (🔊 pdf nwc).

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Johann S. Bach
1685–1750

Lyrics

Now all the woods are sleeping,
And night and stillness creeping
O’er city, man, and beast;
But thou, my heart, awake thee,
To prayer awhile betake thee,
And praise thy Maker ere thou rest.

O Sun, where art thou vanished?
The night thy reign hath banished,
Thy ancient foe, the night.
Farewell, a brighter glory
My Jesus sheddeth o’er me,
All clear within me shines His light.

The last faint beam is going,
The golden stars are glowing
In yonder dark-blue deep;
And such the glory given
When called of God to heaven,
On earth no more we pine and weep.

The body hastes to slumber,
These garments now but cumber;
And as I lay them by
1 ponder how the spirit
Puts off the flesh t’ inherit
A shining robe with Christ on high.

Now thought and labor ceases,
For night the tired releases
And bids sweet rest begin:
My heart, there comes a morrow
Shall set thee free from sorrow
And all the dreary toil of sin.

Ye aching limbs! now rest you,
For toil hath sore oppressed you,
Lie down, my weary head:
A sleep shall once o’ertake you
From which earth ne’er shall wake you,
Within a narrower colder bed.

My heavy eyes are closing,
When I lie deep reposing—
O soul and body, where are ye?
To helpless sleep I yield them,
O let Thy mercy shield them,
Thou sleepless Eye, their guardian be!

My Jesus, stay Thou by me,
And let no foe come nigh me,
Safe sheltered by Thy wing;
But would the foe alarm me,
O let him never harm me,
But still Thine angels round me sing!

My loved ones, rest securely,
From every peril surely
Our God will guard your heads;
And happy slumbers send you,
And bid His hosts attend you,
And golden-armed watch o’er your beds.