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517. If God Himself Be for Me

1 If God Himself be for me,
I may a host defy;
For when I pray, before me
My foes confounded fly.
If Christ, the Head, befriend me
If God be my support
The mischief they intend me
Shall quickly come to naught.

2 This I believe, yea, rather,
In this I make my boast,
That God is my dear Father,
The Friend who loves me most;
And that, whate'er betide me,
My Savior is at hand
Through stormy seas to guide me
And bring me safe to land.

3 I build on this foundation:
That Jesus and His blood
Alone are my salvation,
The true, eternal good.
Without Him all that pleases
Is valueless on earth;
The gifts I owe to Jesus
Alone my love are worth.

4 My Jesus is my Splendor,
My soul's bright beaming Sun;
Were He not my Defender
Before God's awful throne,
I never should find favor
And mercy in His sight,
But be destroyed forever
As darkness by the light.

5 He canceled my offenses,
And saved my soul from death;
'Tis He who ever cleanses
Me from my sins through faith.
In Him I can be cheerful,
Bold, and undaunted aye.
In Him I am not fearful
Of God's great Judgment Day.

6 Naught, naught, can e'er condemn me,
Nor set my hope aside;
Now hell no more can claim me,
Its fury I deride.
No sentence e'er reproves me,
No ill destroys my peace,
For Christ, my Savior, loves me
And shields me with His grace.

7 His Holy Spirit dwelleth
Within my willing heart,
Tames it when it rebelleth
And soothes the keenest smart.
He crowns His work with blessing,
And helpeth me to cry,
"My Father!" without ceasing,
To Him who dwells on high.

8 And when my soul is lying
Weak, trembling, and opprest,
He pleads with groans and sighing
That cannot be expressed;
But God's quick eye discerns them,
Although they give no sound,
And into language turns them
E'en in the heart's deep ground.

9 To mine His Spirit speaketh
Sweet word of holy cheer,
How God, to him that seeketh
For rest, is always near,
And how He hath erected
A city fair and new,
Where what our faith expected
We evermore shall view.

10 In yonder home doth flourish
My heritage, my lot;
Though here I die and perish,
My heav'n shall fail me not.
Though care my life oft saddens
And causeth tears to flow,
The light of Jesus gladdens
And sweetens ev'ry woe.

11 Who clings with resolution
To Him whom Satan hates
Must look for persecution
Which never here abates;
Reproaches, griefs and losses
Rain fast upon his head,
A thousand plagues and crosses
Become his daily bread.

12 All this I am prepared for,
Yet am I not afraid;
By Thee shall all be cared for,
To whom my vows were paid.
Though life and limb it cost me,
And all the earthly store
Which once so much engrossed me,
I love Thee all the more.

13 Not fire, nor sword, not thunder,
Shall sever me from Thee;
Though earth be rent asunder,
Thou'rt mine eternally.
Not hunger, thirst, nor danger,
Not pain, or pinching want,
Nor mighty princes' anger
My fearless soul shall daunt.

14 No angel, and no gladness,
No throne, no pomp, nor show,
No love, no hate, no sadness,
No pain, no depth of woe,
No scheme of man's contrivance,
Though it be great or small,
Shall draw me from Thy guidance
Nor one of these, nor all!

15 My merry heart is springing,
And knows not how to pine;
'Tis full of joy and singing,
And radiancy divine,
The Sun whose smiles so cheers me
Is Jesus Christ alone;
To have Him always near me
Is heav'n itself begun.

Text Information
First Line: If God Himself be for me
Title: If God Himself Be for Me
German Title: Ist Gott für mich, so trete
Author: P. Gerhardt, 1607-76
Translator: R. Massie, 1807-87
Publication Date: 1996
Meter: 76 76 D
Topic: Spiritual Armor; Trinity 21
Language: English
Tune Information
Meter: 76 76 D
Key: g minor
Source: D. Spaiser, 24 Geystliche Lieder, Augsburg, 1609

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