Bags of Bran

Hymn Text (alt.)
March 10, 2015, 10:53 pm
Filed under: Biography

I was leafing through the 1993 Wisconsin Synod Lutheran hymnal and found this beauty:

Creator Spirit, by whose aid
The world’s foundations first were laid,
Come, visit ev’ry humble mind;
Come, pour your joys on humankind.
From sin and sorrow set us free;
May we your living temples be.

O Source of light, our Counselor,
The Father’s help to us assure.
Come down, as promised, with your fire,
And hearts with heav’nly love inspire.
Your sacred, healing message bring
To sanctify us when we sing.

Giver of grace, descend from high
In answer to our earnest cry.
Help us eternal truths receive
And practice all that we believe.
Give us your wisdom that we see
The glory of the Trinity.

Immortal honor, endless fame.
Attend th’almighty Father’s name;
The Savior Son be glorified,
Who for all humankind has died;
And equal adoration rise
To you, O Spirit, in the skies.

Of course, the text seems to have traded hands a few times since it was written back in the 8th century, and even the WELS folks felt the need to alter the text slightly. Here’s an earlier version of the same, which seems to be sturdier and more pietistic:

Creator Spirit, by whose aid
The world’s foundations first were laid,
Come, visit every pious mind;
Come, pour Thy joys on human kind;
From sin, and sorrow set us free;
And make Thy temples worthy Thee.

O Source of uncreated Light,
The Father’s promised Paraclete!
Thrice holy fount, thrice holy fire,
Our hearts with heav’nly love inspire;
Come, and Thy sacred unction bring
To sanctify us, while we sing!

Plenteous of grace, descend from high,
Thou strength of His almighty hand,
Whose power does Heav’n and earth command:
Proceeding Spirit, our defense,
Who dost the gift of tongues dispense,
And crown Thy gift with eloquence!

Refine and purge our earthly parts;
But, oh, inflame and fire our hearts!
Our frailties help, our vice control;
Submit the senses to the soul;
And when rebellious they are grown,
Then, lay Thy hand, and hold them down.

Create all new; our wills control,
Subdue the rebel in our soul;
Make us eternal truths receive,
And practice all that we believe;
Give us Thyself, that we may see
The Father and the Son by Thee.

Immortal honor, endless fame,
Attend th’almighty Father’s name:
The Savior Son be glorified,
Who for lost man’s redemption died:
And equal adoration be,
Eternal Paraclete, to Thee.

Looks like the Lutherans really neutered that one! Tracing subtle (and not-so-subtle) changes to hymns over the years and among the denominations would be a fascinating undertaking. I’d read that book.


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