The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Eternity! Eternity!

For Advent

Version 1

Words: "O Ewigkeit! o Ewigkeit!", Daniel Wülffer, 1617-1685
"The first seven verses are from an old Hymn;
The last seven are by Wülffer."

Translation: Rev. J. H. Hopkins

Music: Pfalzenbuch, 1557

Source: J. H. Hopkins, ed., Great Hymns of the Church Compiled by the Late Right Reverend John Freeman Young (New York: James Pott & Company, 1887), #37, p. 53.

1. Eternity! Eternity!
How long art thou, Eternity?
Swiftly, to gain thy boundless shore,
Time hastens, and returns no more.
Like river rolling to the sea,
So our brief moments flow to thee:
Ponder, O Man, Eternity!

2. Eternity! Eternity!
How long art thou, Eternity?
No Spring hast thou, no Autumn gold,
No summer's heat, nor Winter's cold;
No infant cry begins thy day,
Nor age nor anguish brings decay:
Ponder, O Man, Eternity!

3. Eternity! Eternity!
How long art thou, Eternity?
How fearful dark in endless woe!
How blest where joys forever flow!
God's love is glad and glorious light,
His wrath, all wailing, death, and night:
Ponder, O man, Eternity!

4. Eternity! Eternity!
How long art thou, Eternity?
O Lord my God! here pour on me
Toil, grief, and pain, as pleaseth Thee; —
Here, fire and tempest make me bear;
But let Thy mercy find me there:
O spare me in Eternity! Amen.

Sheet Music from J. H. Hopkins, ed., Great Hymns of the Church Compiled by the Late Right Reverend John Freeman Young (New York: James Pott & Company, 1887), #37, p. 53.

Note: For full German text, see Eternity! Eternity! - Version 2 (plus the translation by Frances Elizabeth Cox). See also Eternity! Eternity! - Version 3 (Translation by Catherine Winkworth).

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