For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich. 2 Corinthians 8:9
Words: Christian Keimann, 1645 (Freuet euch, ihr Christen alle). The words were written for Keimann’s students to perform at Christmas, and were published as Der neugeborne Jesus (Görlitz, Germany: 1646). Translated from German to English by Catherine Winkworth, Chorale Book for England (London: Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts and Green, 1863), number 33.
Oh, rejoice, ye Christians, loudly,
For your joy hath now begun;
Wondrous things our God hath done.
Tell abroad His goodness proudly,
Who our race hath honored thus
That He deigns to dwell with us.
Joy, O joy, beyond all gladness,
Christ hath done away with sadness!
Hence, all sorrow and repining,
For the Son of Grace is shining!
See, my soul, thy Savior chooses
Weakness here and poverty,
In such love He comes to thee
Nor the hardest couch refuses;
All He suffers for thy good,
To redeem thee by His blood.
Lord, how shall I thank Thee rightly?
I acknowledge that from Thee
Every blessing flows to me.
Let me not forget it lightly
But to Thee through all things cleave
So shall heart and mind receive:
Jesus, guard and guide Thy members,
Fill Thy brethren with Thy grace,
Hear their prayers in every place.
Quicken now life’s faintest embers,
Grant all Christians, far and near,
Holy peace, a glad new Year!