1 TO Jordan came our Lord, the Christ,
To do God’s pleasure willing,
And there was by St. John baptized,
All righteousness fulfilling;
There did He consecrate a bath
To wash away transgression,
And quench the bitterness of death
By His own blood and passion,
He would a new life give us.
2 So hear ye all, and well perceive
What God doth call a Baptism,
And what a Christian should believe
Who error shuns and schism:
That we should water use, the Lord
Declareth it His pleasure,
Not simple water, but the Word
And Spirit without measure;--
He is the true Baptizer.
3 To show us this, He hath His word
With signs and symbols given;
On Jordan’s banks was plainly heard
The Father’s voice from heaven:
"This is My well-beloved Son,
In whom My soul delighteth;
Hear Him!" Yea, hear Him, every one,
When He Himself inviteth;
Hear and obey His teaching!
4 In tender manhood God the Son
In Jordan's water standeth;
The Holy Ghost from heaven's throne
In dove-like form descendeth;
That thus the truth be not denied,
Nor should our faith e’er waver,
That the Three Persons all preside
At Baptism’s holy laver,
And dwell with the believer.
5 Thus Jesus His disciples sent
Go, teach ye every nation,
That, lost in sin, they must repent,
And flee from condemnation;
He that believes and is baptized
Shall thereby have salvation,
A new-born man he is in Christ,
From death free and damnation,
He shall inherit heaven.
6 Who in this mercy hath not faith
Nor aught therein discerneth,
Is yet in sin, condemned to death
And fire that ever burneth;
His holiness avails him not,
Nor aught which he is doing;
His inborn sin brings all to naught,
And maketh sure his ruin;
Himself he cannot succor.
7 The eye of sense alone is dim,
And nothing sees but water;
Faith sees Christ Jesus, and in Him
The Lamb ordained for slaughter;
It sees the cleansing fountain, red
With the dear blood of Jesus,
Which from the sins, inherited
From fallen Adam, frees us,
And from our own misdoings.
Massie, Richard, eldest son of the Rev. R. Massie, of Goddington, Cheshire, and Rector of Eccleston, was born at Chester, June 18, 1800, and resides at Pulford Hall, Coddington. Mr. Massie published a translation of Martin Luther’s Spiritual Songs, London, 1854. His Lyra Domestica, 1st series, London, 1860, contains translations of the 1st Series of Spitta's Psalter und Harfe. In 1864 he published vol. ii., containing translations of Spitta's 2nd Series, together with an Appendix of translations of German hymns by various authors. He also contributed many translations of German hymns to Mercer's Church Psalter & Hymn Book; to Reid's British Herald; to the Day of Rest, &c. He died Mar. 11,1887.
-- John Julian, Di… Go to person page >
Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam. M. Luther. [Holy Baptism. ] Probably written 1541, and published as a broadsheet in that year (Wackernagel's Bibliographie, 1855, p. 172). In Low German it appeared in the Magdeburg Gesang-Buch, 1542, and in High German in the Geistliche Lieder, Wittenberg, 1543. In Wackernagel, iii. p. 25, in 7 stanzas of 9 lines, and the same in Schircks's edition of Luther's Geistliche Lieder, 1854, p. 59, and as No. 258 in the Unverfälschter Liedersegen, 1851. The original title is "A hymn on our Holy Baptism, wherein is briefly embraced What it is? Who instituted it? What is its use?" It is a Catechetical hymn setting forth the Lutheran doctrine of Baptism, and is based on St. Matt. iii. 13-17, and St. Mark xvi. The only translation in common use is:—
To Jordan came our Lord the Christ To do. Translated in full in R. Massie's M. Luther’s Spiritual Songs, 1854, p. 69; repeated with stanza vii. altered, as No, 210 in the Ohio Lutheran Hymnal, 1880. Also in Dr. Bacon, 1884, p. 68.
[Rev. James Mearns, M.A.]
--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)
Display Title: To Jordan Came Our Lord, the ChristFirst Line: To Jordan came our Lord the ChristTune Title: CHRIST UNSER HERRAuthor: Richard Massie; Martin LutherMeter: 184.108.40.2067Source: Translation in Martin Luther's Spiritual Songs, 1854, page 69, alt.