Wer nur den lieben Gott läßt walten (Who only lets dear God rule) BWV 93, for the 5th Sunday after Trinity. John Eliot Gardiner and the English Baroque.

I will look upon the Lord

and always trust my God. 

He is the true miracle-worker.

He who can make the rich poor and bare

and the poor rich and great

after His will.

"Ach Herr, mich armen Sünder (Ah Lord, poor sinner that I am)," BWV 135, cantata for the third Sunday after Trinity. Performed here by the Amsterdam Baroque under Ton Koopman, with Annette Markert, Christoph Prégardien, and Klaus Mertens. 

Ah, heal me, You healer of souls,

I am extremely ill and weak;

one can even count my bones,

so sorely has my hardship,

my torment and suffering affected me;

my face

is completely swollen from tears,

which, like rapid rivers, roll down my cheeks.

My soul is anxious and fearful with terror;

Ah, Lord, why so long?

Today is the third Sunday after Trinity and so we hear “Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis (I had much trouble),” BWV 21.

Emma Kirkby, soprano; Michael Chance, alto; Charles Daniels, tenor; Peter Harvey, bass, with the Purcell Quartet and additional wind musicians.

This is an early cantata (1714), and a lengthy one. There is a theme of struggle here, but as always with the cantatas, ultimate triumph in Christ.

Come, my Jesus, and revive,

  - Yes, I come and revive -

And delight with Your glance.

  - You with my glance of grace. -

This soul,

  - Your soul, -

shall die

  - shall live, -

and not live

  - and not die -

and in its pit of unhappiness

  - here out of this cave of injury -

completely perish?

  - you shall inherit -

I must constantly hover in anguish

  - Salvation! Through this juice of the vine. -

Yes, ah yes, I am lost!

  - No, ah no, you are chosen! -

No, ah no, You hate me!

  - Yes, ah yes, I love you! -

Ah, Jesus, thoroughly sweeten my soul and heart!

  - Fade, you troubles, disappear, you pains! -

One of my favorite chorale movements here in the beginning of “Ach Gott, vom Himmel sieh darein (Oh God, look down from heaven),” BWV 2. Based on a hymn by Martin Luther from the first Lutheran hymnal, of 1524.

Johannette Zomer, soprano

Ingeborg Danz, alto

Jan Kobow, tenor

Peter Kooy, bass

Collegium Vocale

Philippe Herreweghe

Ah God, look down from heaven

and have mercy yet upon us!

How few are Your saints, 

we poor ones are abandoned;

Your Word is not upheld as true, 

and faith is also quite extinguished

among all mankind.

Die Himmel erzählen die Ehre Gottes (The heavens are telling the glory of God), BWV 76, cantata for the second Sunday after Trinity.

Ton Koopman with the Amsterdam Baroque and soloists.

Hasse nur, hasse mich recht, 

Feindlichs Geschlecht!

  Christum gläubig zu umfassen,

  Will ich alle Freude lassen.

Just hate me, hate me well,

enemy genus!

  To embrace Christ faithfully,

  I will abandon all joy.

I apologize for the frankly bizarre visuals on this video. It’s not quite as creepy as the Taylor Swift slash Islamic fashion inspired series that is up on YouTube, but it’s pretty weird. But, I do not apologize at all for the performance, for here we have Ton Koopman and the gang at the Amsterdam Baroque, and a truly excellent rendition of “Freue dich, erlöste Schar (Rejoice, redeemed flock),” BWV 30. This is a later work of Bach, and a very spirited and festive one.

This is our final cantata for St. John’s day. I hope you had a good one. 

We have repose,

and the burden of the law

is done away with.

Nothing shall disturb this our rest,

that our dear forefathers often

desired, longed and hoped for.

Indeed,

they rejoice, who can eternally,

and sound to the honor of their God

a song of praise,

that in the exalted choirs

indeed, are sung to one another!

A jaunty reading of this cantata for St. John’s day, “Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam (Christ our Lord came to the Jordan),” BWV 7, by Holland Boys Choir and the Netherlands Bach Collegium under the direction of Pieter Jan Leusink.

Christ our Lord came to the Jordan

according to His Father’s will,

He received baptism from Saint John,

to fulfill his work and destiny;

thus He wishes to draw us a bath,

to cleanse us from sin,

to drown bitter death as well

through His own blood and wounds;

it permitted a new life.

Funny video, serious singing.

The Feast of St. John the Baptist is upon us. There are three cantatas for this day. Let’s start with “Ihr Menschen, rühmet Gottes Liebe (You people, glorify God’s love),” BWV 167, performed here by the English Baroque directed by John Eliot Gardiner.

Having listened through I am pretty irritated—I love Gardiner’s interpretation but this Youtuber has for some reason cut off the last recitative and choral into a separate video. Anyhow, do have patience and enjoy the whole thing!  I love the closing chorale the very best.

Glory, and praise with honor

be to God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!

He will increase in us

what He has promised us out of grace,

so that we trust fast in Him,

abandon ourselves completely to Him,

rely on Him within our hearts,

so that our heart, will, and mind

depend strongly on Him;

therefore we sing at this time:

Amen, we shall succeed,

if we believe from the depths of our hearts.