The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Waken! From The Tower It Soundeth

For Advent

Words: Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme, Philipp Nicolai (1556-1608), 1599
Translation by Francis A. Bevan

Inspired by the Parable of the Ten Virgins: Matthew 25: 1-13
Includes notes and a listing of some of the many hymns and carols inspired by this Parable.

Music: "Nach," Hans Sachs (1494-1576),
adapted by Philipp Nicolai (1556-1608)
arr. and harm. Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML
Meter: Irr.

Source: Francis A. Bevan, Songs of Eternal Life (1858), pp. 1-2.

1. Waken ! From the Tower it soundeth
Suddenly, whilst Night surroundeth—
                    Waken, O Jerusalem!
In the deep, dark, silent hour
Rings that shout upon the Tower:
          Virgins, rise to welcome Him—
At the gate the Bridegroom stands;
Take your bright lamps in your hands—
Haste along with light and song.
To join the saintly marriage throng.

2. Zion hears the mighty singing;
Joyfully, her heart upspringing,
     Sees Him shining through the gloom—
Sees Him come from Heaven most glorious;
Strong in grace, in truth victorious.
     Her star is risen, her light is come—
Hail, Thou Crown, Thou great Reward,
Jesus, Son of God, the Lord,
     The conquering King:
His palace Home for all hath room,
The marriage of the Lamb is come.

3. Glorious is the song ascending.
Tongues of men and angels blending.
     Harps and cymbals clear and sweet:
Through the twelve pearl gates we enter
With the angels, in the splendour
     High around the Throne we meet;
          Never yet did eye behold.
          Never unto ear was told.
               The like before.
We shout and sing that the Lord is King,
With the voice of a mighty thundering.

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