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94. O How Shall I Receive Thee

1 O how shall I receive Thee,
How welcome Thee aright!
All nations long to greet Thee,
My hope, my heart’s delight!
O Jesus, Jesus, set Thee
Thy lamp within my breast,
And by its guidance let me
Know what doth please Thee best.

2 Thy Zion strews before Thee
Green boughs and fairest palms,
And I, too, will adore Thee
With sweetest songs and psalms.
My heart shall bloom forever
For Thee with praises new,
And from Thy name shall never
Withhold the honor due.

3 What hast Thou left ungranted
To give me glad relief?
When soul and body panted
In utmost depth of grief,
In deepest degradation,
Devoid of joy and peace,
Then, Thou, my soul's Salvation,
Didst come to bring release.

4 I lay in fetters groaning,
Thou com’st to set me free;
I stood, my shame bemoaning,
Thou com’st to honor me.
A glory Thou dost give me,
A treasure safe on high,
That will not fail or leave me
As earthly riches fly.

5 Naught, naught, dear Lord, could move Thee
To leave Thy rightful place
Save love, for which I love Thee;
A love that could embrace
A world where sorrow dwelleth,
Which sin and suff'ring fill,
More than the tongue e'er telleth;
Yet Thou couldst love it still!

6 Rejoice, then, ye sad-hearted,
Who sit in deepest gloom,
Who mourn o’er joys departed,
And tremble at your doom;
Despair not, He is near you,
Yea, standing at the door,
Who best can help and cheer you,
And bid you weep no more.

7 No care nor effort either
Is needed day or night,
How ye may draw Him hither
In your own strength and might.
He comes, He comes with gladness,
Moved by His love alone,
To calm your fear and sadness,
To Him they well are known.

8 Sin's debt, that fearful burden,
Let not your souls distress;
Your guilt the Lord will pardon
And cover with His grace.
He comes, He comes procuring
The peace of sin forgiv'n,
For all God's sons securing
Their heritage in heav'n.

9 Why should the wicked move you?
Heed not their craft and spite!
Your Savior who doth love you
Will scatter all their might.
He comes, a King most glorious,
And all His earthly foes
In vain His course victorious
Endeavor to oppose.

10 He comes to judge the nations,
A terror to His foes,
A Light of consolations
And blessed Hope to those
Who love the Lord's appearing.
O glorious Sun, now come,
Send forth Thy beams so cheering,
And guide us safely home!

Text Information
First Line: O how shall I receive Thee
Title: O How Shall I Receive Thee
German Title: Wie solich dich emfangen
Author: P. Gerhardt, 1607-76
Translator: C. Winkworth, 1827-78
Meter: 76 76 D
Language: English
Publication Date: 1996
Topic: Jesus, The Coming King; Advent 1
Tune Information
Composer: J. Crüger, 1598-1662
Meter: 76 76 D
Key: D Major

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