Monday, November 16, 2015

160. Hymn for the 20th Sunday after Trinity

The Epistle for this mass is Ephesians 5:15-21, and the Gospel is Matthew 22:1-14, Jesus' parable of the royal marriage feast. I realized only after writing this hymn that my book of "useful hymns" already contains two other hymns on the same parable. One is "O kingly Love" by Martin Franzmann, set to an original tune by yours truly, and it is the one I had to consciously avoid plagiarizing as I wrote the hymn below. The other is one of those "scratched and dented" hymns that I wrote, words and music, only to forget about it until after I had gone to all this trouble. Oh, well. At least in this instance I won't have to write another original tune. I'm recommending either of two tunes titled MEINEN JESUM LASS ICH NICHT, the first one from the 1699 Neuverfertigtes Gesangbuch of Darmstadt, or the second by Johann Ulich, 1674.
Darmstadt, above; Ulich, below.
King of heaven, who by grace
To Your Son’s high feast invite us,
Counting none too bad or base,
Drawing us to Him despite us:
Number us with Your elect,
Lest Your summons we reject!

God forbid that we should lose
By indifferent hearts that calling,
Or Your messengers abuse,
In yet deeper judgment falling!
Rather, with the worst and least,
Drag and drive us to Your feast!

Clothe us in the wedding garb
Of Christ’s righteousness unfailing,
Lest we feel hell’s stinging barb
And despair with shame and wailing!
Waken faith, our pride subdue;
Count us with Your chosen few!

Help us walk as do the wise,
These last evil days redeeming,
Clean at heart and clear at eyes,
Knowing truth from empty seeming;
Meantime from our heart to sing
Thankful anthems to our King!

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