Saturday, 28 March 2015

Now thank we all our God Hymn and Lyrics - Martin Rinkart, 1586-1649

Now Thank We All Our God Story

The Thirty Years War in Germany from 1618 to 1648 devastated the land and inflicted incredible hardships on a long-suffering people. But the German Protestants remained true to their faith and bore their trials bravely for conscience sake, at last winning honorable respite from their sufferings in the Peace of
Rev Martin Rickart
Westphalia, October 24, 1648. 

Among the bravest of the sufferers from the war was the Rev. Martin Rinkart, who wrote the hymn originally in German, "Now thank we all our God." It is generally supposed that he wrote it as a hymn of praise because of the restoration of peace at the close of thirty years of horrible strife. 

Catherine Winkworth, who translated this hymn into English, once wrote of him: "So great were Rinkart's own losses and charities that he had the utmost difficulty in finding bread and clothes for his children, and was forced to mortgage his future income for several years.

Yet how little his spirit was broken by all these calamities is shown by this hymn and others that he wrote; some, indeed, speaking of his own country's sorrows, but all breathing the same spirit of unbounded trust and readiness to give thanks." 

Rinkart was a skilled musician, as well as a poet; and, besides, he wrote seven dramas based upon the Restoration Period which were produced at the one hundredth anniversary of the Reformation. But he is best known to posterity through his hymns.

Now thank we all our God Lyrics

1 Now thank we all our God
with heart and hands and voices,
who wondrous things has done,
in whom his world rejoices;
who from our mothers' arms
has blessed us on our way
with countless gifts of love,
and still is ours today.

2 O may this bounteous God
through all our life be near us,
with ever joyful hearts
and blessed peace to cheer us,
to keep us in his grace,
and guide us when perplexed,
and free us from all ills
of this world in the next.

3 All praise and thanks to God
the Father now be given,
the Son and Spirit blest,
who reign in highest heaven
the one eternal God,
whom heaven and earth adore;
for thus it was, is now,
and shall be evermore. 

For more lyrics and stories of old hymns visit here.

Choir of King's College Cambridge Now Thank We All Our God Hymn video




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