Saturday, October 1, 2022

360. Proper 12 (Series A)

For this Sunday between July 24 and 30, the LSB lectionary appoints Deuteronomy 7:6-9, Romans 8:28-39 and Matthew 13:44-52. It's tempting to focus on the Epistle, but that would require me to rewrite (somehow without plagiarizing) one of my favorite hymns, "If God Himself be for me." So, instead, I'm focusing mainly on the other two lessons, especially the Gospel. The tune is titled ISTE CONFESSOR, which the 1973 Australian Lutheran Hymnal attributes to an Angers church melody and cites J. B. Croft’s Collection (1887) – not to be confused with the slightly better-known Rouen church melody by the same name (and in the same meter), from the Poitiers Antiphoner of 1746.

Know, saints of God, with what love He esteemed you
That from your sin's dark bondage He redeemed you;
All for His word's sake, not what lies within you,
He died to win you.

While for the kingdom Jesus' word prepares you,
Hark, heirs of heav'n, to what your Lord compares you!
As one sells all, a hidden treasure buying,
Think on His dying!

And as one pearl above all things is treasured,
So in His eyes you, even you, are measured;
E'en though the angels at the end my sift you,
He will uplift you.

Blest be the pupil who devoutly listens,
Then from his Master's treasure draws provisions:
Things old and new, faith's eyes to Jesus guiding,
And there abiding.

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