Ere yet the dawn hath fill'd the skies

Representative Text

1 Ere yet the dawn hath filled the skies,
Behold my Savior Christ arise;
He chaseth from us sin and night
And brings us joy and life and light.

2 O stronger Thou than death and hell,
Where is the foe Thou canst not quell,
What heavy stone Thou canst not roll
From off the prisoned, suff'ring soul?

3 If Jesus lives, can I be sad?
I know He loves me and am glad:
Tho' all the world were dead to me,
Enough, O Christ, if I have Thee.

4 He feeds me, comforts and defends,
And when I die, His angel sends
To bear me whither He is gone;
For of His own He loseth none.

5 No more to fear or grief I bow,
God and the angels love me now;
The joys prepared for me today
Drive fear and mourning far away.

6 Strong Champion! For this comfort, see,
The whole world bringeth thanks to Thee!
And once we too shall raise above
More sweet and loud the song we love:

Source: American Lutheran Hymnal #437

Author: Johann Heermann

Heermann, Johann, son of Johannes Heermann, furrier at Baudten, near Wohlau, Silesia, was born at Baudten, Oct. 11, 1585. He was the fifth but only surviving child of his parents, and during a severe illness in his childhood his mother vowed that if he recovered she would educate him for the ministry, even though she had to beg the necessary money. He passed through the schools at Wohlau; at Fraustadt (where he lived in the house of Valerius Herberger, q. v., who took a great interest in him); the St. Elizabeth gymnasium at Breslau; and the gymnasium at Brieg. At Easter, 1609, he accompanied two young noblemen (sons of Baron Wenzel von Rothkirch), to whom he had been tutor at Brieg, to the University of Strassburg; but an affection of the e… Go to person page >

Translator: Catherine Winkworth

Catherine Winkworth is "the most gifted translator of any foreign sacred lyrics into our tongue, after Dr. Neale and John Wesley; and in practical services rendered, taking quality with quantity, the first of those who have laboured upon German hymns. Our knowledge of them is due to her more largely than to any or all other translators; and by her two series of Lyra Germanica, her Chorale Book, and her Christian Singers of Germany, she has laid all English-speaking Christians under lasting obligation." --Annotations of the Hymnal, Charles Hutchins, M.A., 1872… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Ere yet the dawn hath filled the skies
Title: Ere yet the dawn hath fill'd the skies
German Title: Fr├╝hmorgens da sie Sonn' aufgeht
Author: Johann Heermann (1630)
Translator: Catherine Winkworth (1863)
Language: English





Initially Luther used the folk melody associated with his first stanza as the tune for this hymn. Later he composed this new tune for his text. VOM HIMMEL HOCH was first published in Valentin Schumann's Geistliche Lieder in 1539. Johann S. Bach (PHH 7) used Luther's melody in three places in his wel…

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The Cyber Hymnal #1355
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The Cyber Hymnal #1355

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