Not in anger, Mighty God

Representative Text

1 Not in anger, mighty God,
Not in anger smite us.
We must perish if Thy rod
Justly should requite us.
We are naught;
Sin hath brought,
Lord, Thy wrath upon us.
Yet have mercy on us!

2 Show me now a Father's love
And His tender patience.
Heal my wounded soul; remove
These too sore temptations.
I am weak;
Father, speak
Thou of peace and gladness;
Comfort Thou my sadness.

3 Weary am I of my pain,
Weary with my sorrow,
Sighing still for help in vain,
Longing for the morrow.
Why wilt Thou
Tarry now!
Wilt Thou friendless leave me
And of hope bereave me?

4 Hence ye foes, He comes in grace;
God hath deigned to hear me.
I may come before His face,
He is inly near me.
He o'erthrows
All my foes,
Death and hell are vanquished
In whose bonds I languished.

5 Father, hymns to Thee we raise
Here and once in heaven,
And the Son and Spirit praise,
Who our bonds have riven.
We adore
Thee whose love hath stirred us
And whose pity heard us.

Source: Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #454

Translator: Catherine Winkworth

Catherine Winkworth (b. Holborn, London, England, 1827; d. Monnetier, Savoy, France, 1878) is well known for her English translations of German hymns; her translations were polished and yet remained close to the original. Educated initially by her mother, she lived with relatives in Dresden, Germany, in 1845, where she acquired her knowledge of German and interest in German hymnody. After residing near Manchester until 1862, she moved to Clifton, near Bristol. A pioneer in promoting women's rights, Winkworth put much of her energy into the encouragement of higher education for women. She translated a large number of German hymn texts from hymnals owned by a friend, Baron Bunsen. Though often altered, these translations continue to be used i… Go to person page >

Author: Johann Georg Albinus

Albinus, Johann Georg eldest s. of Zacharias Albinus, pastor at Unter-Nessa, near Weissenfels, Saxony, 1621-1633, and at Stuhlburgwerben, 1633-1635, was b. at UnterNessa, March 6, 1624. After his father's death, in 1635, he was, in 1638, adopted by his cousin, Lucas Pollio, diaconus at St Nicholas's Church in Leipzig. After his cousin's death, in 1643, the Court preacher, Sebastian Mitternacht, of Naumburg, took an interest in him, and he remained at Naumburg till he entered the University of Leipzig, in 1645. He studied for eight years at Leipzig, during which time ho acted as house tutor to the Burgomaster, Dr. Friedrich Kuhlwein, and was then, in 1653, appointed Eector of the Cathedral School at Naumburg. This post he resigned when, in… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Not in anger, Mighty God
German Title: Straf' mich nicht in deinem Zorn
Author: Johann Georg Albinus
Translator: Catherine Winkworth
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain


ii. Straf mich nicht in deinem Zorn. [Psalm vi.] Of the origin of this hymn, J. C. Wetzel, i. 46, and ii. 404, relates what seems rather an apocryphal story to this effect:—

Johann Rosenmuller, while music director at Leipzig, had been guilty of improper practices with some of his scholars. He was thrown into prison, but having made his escape, went to Hamburg. Thence he sent a petition for restoration to the Elector Johann Georg at Dresden, and to support his petition enclosed this hymn, which Albinus had written for him, along with the beautiful melody by himself (in the Irish Church Hymnal, 1876; called Nassau, in the Darmstadt Gesang-Buch 1698, p. 49).

This, if correct, would date it about 1655, and Koch, iii. 398, says it was printed separately in that year; The earliest hymn-book in which it is found is Luppius's Andachtig Singender Christen Mund, Wesel., 1692, p. 20. It is a beautiful hymn of Penitence (by Miss Winkworth assigned to Ash Wednesday). Included as No. 273 in Freylinghausen's Gesang-Buch, 1704, and recently as No. 535 in the Berlin Geistliche Liedersegen, ed. 1863, in 7 stanzas of 8 lines. The translations in common use are:—

2. Not in anger, mighty God. A good translation omitting stanzas ii., iv., as No. 41 in Miss Winkworth's Chorale Book for England, 1863, and thence as No. 205 in the Temple Hymn Book 1867, as No. 323 in the Free Church Hymn Book 1882, and omitting the translation of st. vi., as No. 78 in the Upp. & Sherb. School Hymn Book 1874. In America as No. 398 in the Evangelical Hymnal, New York, 1880, in full.

--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



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Christian Worship (1993) #423

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Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #454

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