Song of Thanksgiving after Great Sorrow and Affliction

After clouds we see the sun

Author: Paul Gerhardt; Translator: J. Kelly (1867)
Published in 1 hymnal

Representative Text

After clouds we see the sun,
Joy we feel when grief is gone,
After bitter pain and sore
Cometh consolation’s hour.
Then my soul that sank before,
Even down to hell’s dark door,
To the heav’nly choir doth soar.

He ’fore whom the world shall flee,
In my spirit comforts me,
With His high and mighty hand,
Tears me from the hellish band.
With the love to me He shows,
Swells my heart and overflows,
And my blood with rapture glows.

Did I e’er ’neath sorrow bend?
Did my heart grief ever rend?
Have I e’er been vexèd sore?
Satan e’er fool’d me before?
Aye—but henceforth am I free,
Faithfully thou shieldest me,
My salvation comes from Thee!

What thou mean’st, my bitter foe!
By thy deeds tow’rds me I know;
Truly thou with all thy pow’r
Seek’st me ever to devour.
Had I too much trusted thee,
Then had’st thou, ere I could see,
In thy snares entangled me.

All the guile I know full well
That in thy bad heart doth dwell;
Thou my God malign’st to me,
Turn’st His praise to obloquy;
Speaketh out His loving heart,
Keeps He silence on His part,
All He doth dost thou pervert.

If I hope and look for good,
If I’m in a joyous mood,
From my mind thou driv’st away
Every good thought—and dost say:
“God doth far from thee abide,
Riseth high misfortune’s tide
Round thee now on every side.”

Hence depart! thou lying mouth,
Here is God’s own ground in truth,
For the face of God is here,
And the beauteous light and clear
Of His favour, here doth rise,
All His word and counsel wise,
Op’d are now before mine eyes.

God lets none in sadness stay,
He with shame drives none away,
Who themselves up to Him give,
With the whole heart to Him cleave,
Who their cares on Him aye cast,
And hope in Him—joy at last,
For the soul and body taste.

Though it comes not as we will,
Just to-day—yet be thou still,
For perchance to-morrow may
Be the bright and joyous day.
God’s time comes with measur’d step,
When it comes His word He’ll keep
And joy’s harvest we shall reap.

Ah! how often did I think,
As my feet began to sink
’Neath the heavy load of care,
In the mire of blank despair,
Now there is no hope for me,
Rest for me there cannot be
Till I enter death’s dark sea.

But my God put forth His pow’r
To avert and to restore,
That I ne’er enough can tell
What His arm hath done so well;
When no path I could descry,
When no help to guide was nigh,
Help God sent me from on high.

When I timid and perplex’d
Often have my spirit vex’d,
Sleepless toss’d thro’ all the night,
Sick at heart when dawn’d the light,
When heart fail’d me utterly,
Hast Thou then appear’d to me,
Turning my captivity.

Now as long as here I roam,
Have on earth a house and home,
’Fore mine eyes continually
Shall this thing of wonder be.
All my life long shall I bring
Offerings of thanks, and sing
Songs of praise to God my King.

Every grief and every smart,
By th’eternal Father’s heart
Ever yet appointed me,
Or that may hereafter be
Chosen for me, all my days
From His gracious hand always,
I’ll receive with joy and praise.

I will tread woe’s bitter path,
I will onward go to death,
I into the grave will go,
Still my heart with joy shall glow.
Whom the Highest will raise high,
Whom th’ Almighty standeth nigh,
Ne’er can perish utterly.

Paul Gerhardt’s Spiritual Songs, 1867

Author: Paul Gerhardt

Paul Gerhardt (b. Gräfenheinichen, Saxony, Germany, 1607; d. Lubben, Germany, 1676), famous author of Lutheran evangelical hymns, studied theology and hymnody at the University of Wittenberg and then was a tutor in Berlin, where he became friends with Johann Crüger. He served the Lutheran parish of Mittenwalde near Berlin (1651-1657) and the great St. Nicholas' Church in Berlin (1657-1666). Friederich William, the Calvinist elector, had issued an edict that forbade the various Protestant groups to fight each other. Although Gerhardt did not want strife between the churches, he refused to comply with the edict because he thought it opposed the Lutheran "Formula of Concord," which con­demned some Calvinist doctrines. Consequently, he was r… Go to person page >

Translator: J. Kelly

Kelly, John, was born at Newcastle-on-Tyne, educated at Glasgow University, studied theology at Bonn, New College, Edinburgh, and the Theological College of the English Presbyterian Church (to which body he belongs) in London. He has ministered to congregations at Hebburn-on-Tyne and Streatham, and was Tract Editor of the Religious Tract Society. His translations of Paul Gerhardt's Spiritual Songs were published in 1867. Every piece is given in full, and rendered in the metre of the originals. His Hymns of the Present Century from the German were published in 1886 by the Religious Tract Society. In these translations the metres of the originals have not always been followed, whilst some of the hymns have been abridged and others condens… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: After clouds we see the sun
Title: Song of Thanksgiving after Great Sorrow and Affliction
German Title: Auf den Nebel folgt die Sonne
Author: Paul Gerhardt
Translator: J. Kelly (1867)
Language: English
Publication Date: 1867
Copyright: This text is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before 1929.


Instances (1 - 1 of 1)

Paul Gerhardt's Spiritual Songs #56

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