Scripture Verse

As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more. Psalm 103:15–16


John of Damascus (675–749)

Words: John of Da­mas­cus (675–749) (Ποία τοῦ βίού τρυ­ϕὴ δια­μέ­νει λύ­πης ἀμ­έτο­χος). Trans­lat­ed from Greek to Eng­lish by J. Ath­el­stan Ri­ley in The Eng­lish Hym­nal (Lon­don: Ox­ford Uni­ver­si­ty Press, 1906), num­ber 361.

Music: Chris­tus, der ist mein Le­ben Mel­chi­or Vul­pi­us, 1609 (🔊 pdf nwc).

J. Athelstan Riley (1858–1945)


What sweet of life en­dur­eth
Unmixed with bit­ter pain?
’Midst earth­ly change and chanc­es
What glo­ry doth re­main?

All is a fee­ble sha­dow,
A dream that will not stay;
Death com­eth in a mo­ment,
And tak­eth all away.

O Christ, a light trans­cen­dent
Shines in Thy coun­te­nance,
And none can tell the sweet­ness,
The beau­ty of Thy glance.

In this may Thy poor ser­vant
His joy eter­nal find;
Thou calledst him, O rest him,
Thou lov­er of man­kind!