Behold, behold what wonders here

Representative Text

1 Behold! behold! what wonders here!
The gloomy night turns bright and clear,
A brilliant light dispels the shade,
The stars before it pale and fade.

2 A wondrous light it is, I trow,
And not the ancient sun shines now;
For, contrary to nature, night
Is turned by it to day so bright.

3 What means He to announce to us,
Who nature’s course can alter thus?
A mighty work designed must be,
When such a mighty sign we see.

4 To us vouchsafed can it be
The Sun of Righteousness to see,
The Star from Jacob’s stem so bright,
The Woman’s Seed, the Gentiles’ Light?

5 ’Tis even so--for from the sky
Heaven’s hosts with joyful tidings hie,
That He is born in Bethlehem’s stall,
Who Savior is and Lord of all!

6 Oh blessedness! the goodly throng
Of sainted fathers waited long
To see this day, with hope deferred,
As we may learn from God’s own Word.

Source: Evangelical Lutheran hymnal: with music #25a

Author: Paul Gerhardt

Gerhardt, Paulus, son of Christian Gerhardt, burgomaster of Gräfenhaynichen, near Wittenberg, was born at Grafenhaynichen, Mar. 12, 1607. On January 2, 1628, he matriculated at the University of Wittenberg. In the registers of St. Mary's church, Wittenberg, his name appears as a godfather, on July 13, 1641, described still as "studiosus," and he seems to have remained in Wittenberg till at least the end of April, 1642. He appears to have gone to Berlin in 1642 or 1643, and was there for some time (certainly after 1648) a tutor in the house of the advocate Andreas Barthold, whose daughter (Anna Maria, b. May 19, 1622, d. March 5, 1668) became his wife in 1655. During this period he seems to have frequently preached in Berlin. He was appoint… Go to person page >

Translator: John 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: Behold, behold what wonders here
German Title: Schaut! Schaut! was ist fuer Wunder dar?
Author: Paul Gerhardt
Translator: John Kelly
Language: English




Derived from the fourth piano piece in Robert A. Schumann's Nachtstücke, Opus 23 (1839), CANONBURY first appeared as a hymn tune in J. Ireland Tucker's Hymnal with Tunes, Old and New (1872). The tune, whose title refers to a street and square in Islington, London, England, is often matched to Haver…

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Instances (1 - 4 of 4)
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Evangelical Lutheran Hymnal #25

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Evangelical Lutheran hymnal: with music #25a

TextPage Scan

Evangelical Lutheran hymnal: with music #25b


Paul Gerhardt's Spiritual Songs #4

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