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The following are links to English translations for Bach's cantatas and other works rendered in Bach Vespers at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, NYC. We are pleased for you to peruse these translations for your own enjoyment, but please respect the artistic product they represent and reprint only by permission. Contact office@bachvespersnyc.org for more information.

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Text for Cantata 72 
Alles nur nach Gottes Willen
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)


Alles nur nach Gottes Willen,
     All simply according to God’s will,
so bei Lust als Traurigkeit,
     so, by pleasure or sorrow,
so bei gut als böser Zeit.
     so, by good or bad times.
Gottes Wille soll mich stillen
     God’s will shall calm me
bei Gewölk und Sonnenschein.
     by clouds or sunshine.
Alles nur nach Gottes Willen!
     All simply according to God’s will!
Dies soll meine Losung sein.
     This shall be my motto.
O selger Christ, 
     O blessed Christian,
der allzeit seinen Willen in Gottes Willen senkt, 
     who always submerses his will in God’s will,
es gehe wie es gehe,
     it goes as it will go,
bei Wohl und Wehe.
     by well or woe.
Herr, so du willt, so muß sich alles fügen!
     Lord, as you will, so must all concur!
Herr, so du willt, so kannst du mich vergnügen!
     Lord, as you will, so can you delight me!
Herr, so du willt, verschwindet meine Pein!
     Lord, as you will, my pain vanishes!
Herr, so du willt, werd ich gesund und rein!
     Lord, as you will, I will be healthy and cleansed!
Herr, so du willt, wird Traurigkeit zur Freude!
     Lord, as you will, sorrow will turn to joy!
Herr, so du willt, und ich auf Dornen weide!
     Lord, as you will, and I will graze among thorns!
Herr, so du willt, werd ich einst selig sein!
     Lord, as you will, I will one day be blessed!
Herr, so du willt, lass mich dies Wort im Glauben fassen
     Lord, as you will, let this word hold me in faith
und meine Seele stillen!
     and calm my soul!
Herr, so du willt, so sterb ich nicht,
     Lord, as you will, so shall I not die,
ob Leib und Leben mich verlassen,
     though body and life desert me,
wenn mir dein Geist dies Wort ins Herze spricht!
     if your Spirit speaks this word in my heart!
Mit allem, was ich hab und bin,
     With all which I have and am
will ich mich Jesu lassen,
     I will abandon myself to Jesus,
kann gleich mein schwacher Geist und Sinn
des Höchsten Rat nicht fassen;
     even if my weak spirit and mind
     cannot grasp the counsel of the Most High;
er führe mich nur immer hin
     he will always lead me forward
auf Dorn- und Rosenstraßen!
     along thorny or rose paths!
So glaube nun!
     So now believe!
Dein Heiland saget: Ich wills tun!
     Your Savior says: I will do it!
Er pflegt die Gnadenhand
noch willigst auszustrecken,
     He willingly yet cares
     to reach out a gracious hand,
wenn Kreuz und Leiden dich erschrecken,
     when cross and suffering afflict you,
er kennet deine Not und löst dein Kreuzesband.
     he knows your distress
     and loosens the bands of the cross.
Er stärkt, was schwach,
     He strengthens the weak
und will das niedre Dach
der armen Herzen nicht verschmähen,
darunter gnädig einzugehen.
     and mercifully is not ashamed
     to enter under the humble roof
     of the meek heart.
Mein Jesus will es tun, er will dein Kreuz versüßen.
     My Jesus will do it, he will sweeten your cross.
Obgleich dein Herze liegt in viel Bekümmernissen,
     Even if your heart lies in great tribulation,
soll es doch sanft und still in seinen Armen ruhn,
     it shall indeed rest, tenderly and quietly, in his arms,
wenn ihn der Glaube faßt;
     when faith clings to him;
mein Jesus will es tun!
     my Jesus will do it!
Was mein Gott will, das g'scheh allzeit,
     Whatever my God wants, may it ever occur,
sein Will, der ist der beste,
     his will, it is for the best,
zu helfen den'n er ist bereit,
     he is poised to help those
die an ihn glauben feste.
     who firmly believe in him.
Er hilft aus Not, der fromme Gott,
     He helps [them] out of distress, this devoted God,
und züchtiget mit Maßen.
     and chastises in moderation.
Wer Gott vertraut, fest auf ihn baut,
     Whoever trusts in God and securely builds on him,
den will er nicht verlassen.
      him will he not abandon.

COMPOSED:  January 27, 1726 for the 3rd Sunday after Epiphany
LIBRETTIST: Salomo Franck (Weimar, 1715); Mvt. 6. Margrave Albrecht von Brandenburg, stanza 1 of Was mein Gott will, das g'scheh allzeit (1547)
TRANSLATION: Tobin Schmuck, 2011 © Bach Vespers at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, NYC
Use by permission only, please. office@bachvespersnyc.org

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