Text:If God Himself Be for Me
Author:Paul Gerhardt
Translator (from German):Richard Massie
Composer:Lowell Mason
Media:MIDI file

2793. If God Himself Be for Me

1. If God Himself be for me,
I may a host defy,
For when I pray, before me
my foes confounded fly.
If Christ, the Head, befriend me,
if God be my support,
The mischief they intend me
shall quickly come to naught.

2. I build on this foundation,
that Jesus and His blood
Alone are my salvation,
the true eternal good;
Without Him, all that pleases
is valueless on earth:
The gifts I owe to Jesus
alone my love are worth.

3. His Holy Spirit dwelleth
within my willing heart,
Tames it when it rebelleth,
and soothes the keenest smart.
He crowns His work with blessing,
and helpeth me to cry
My Father! without ceasing
to Him who reigns on high.

4. To mine His Spirit speaketh
sweet words of soothing power,
How God to Him that seeketh
for rest, hath rest in store;
How God Himself prepareth
my heritage and lot,
And though my body weareth,
my Heav’n shall fail me not.

Another translation, based on Massie, from The Lutheran Hymnal (St. Louis, Missouri: Concordia Publishing House, 1941), number 528:

1. If God Himself be for me,
I may a host defy;
For when I pray, before me,
My foes, confounded, fly.
If Christ, my Head and Master,
Befriend me from above,
What foe or what disaster
Can drive me from His love?

2. This I believe, yea, rather,
Of this I make my boast,
That God is my dear Father,
The Friend who loves me most,
And that, whate’er betide me,
My Savior is at hand
Thro’ stormy seas to guide me
And bring me safe to land.

3. I build on this foundation,
That Jesus and His blood
Alone are my salvation,
The true, eternal good.
Without Him all that pleases
Is valueless on earth;
The gifts I owe to Jesus
Alone my love are worth.

4. So Jesus is my Splendor,
My Sun, my Light alone;
Were He not my Defender
Before God’s awe-full throne,
I never should find favor
And mercy in His sight,
But be destroyed forever
As darkness by the light.

5. He canceled my offenses,
Delivered me from death;
He is the Lord who cleanses
My soul from sin through faith.
In Him I can be cheerful,
Bold, and undaunted aye;
In Him I am not fearful
Of God’s great Judgment Day.

6. Naught, naught can now condemn me
Nor set my hope aside;
Now hell no more can claim me
Its fury I deride.
No sentence e’er reproves me,
No ill destroys my peace;
For Christ, my Savior, loves me
And shields me with His grace.

7. His Spirit in me dwelleth,
And o’er my mind He reigns.
All sorrow He dispelleth
And soothes away all pains.
He crowns His work with blessing
And helpeth me to cry,
My Father! without ceasing,
To Him who dwells on high.

8. And when my soul is lying
Weak, trembling, and opprest,
He pleads with groans and sighing
That cannot be exprest;
But God’s quick eye discerns them,
Although they give no sound,
And into language turns them
E’en in the heart’s deep ground.

9. To mine His Spirit speaketh
Sweet words of holy cheer,
How God to him that seeketh
For rest is always near
And how He hath erected
A city fair and new,
Where all that faith expected
We evermore shall view.

10. In yonder home doth flourish
My heritage, my lot;
Though here I die and perish,
My heaven shall fail me not.
Though care my life oft saddens
And causeth tears to flow,
The light of Jesus gladdens
And sweetens every woe.

11. Who clings with resolution
To Him whom Satan hates
Must look for persecution;
For him the burden waits
Of mockery, shame, and losses,
Heaped on his blameless head;
A thousand plagues and crosses
Will be his daily bread.

12. From me this is not hidden,
Yet I am not afraid;
I leave my cares, as bidden,
To whom my vows were paid.
Though life and limb it cost me
And everything I own,
Unshaken shall I trust Thee
And cleave to Thee alone.

13. Thou earth be rent asunder,
Thou’rt mine eternally;
Not fire nor sword nor thunder
Shall sever me from Thee;
Not hunger, thirst, nor danger,
Not pain nor poverty
Nor mighty princes’ anger
Shall ever hinder me.

14. No angel and no gladness,
No throne, no pomp, no show,
No love, no hate, no sadness,
No pain, no depth of woe,
No scheme of man’s contrivance,
However small or great,
Shall draw me from Thy guidance
Nor from Thee separate.

15. My heart for joy is springing
And can no more be sad,
’Tis full of mirth and singing,
Sees naught but sunshine glad.
The Sun that cheers my spirit
Is Jesus Christ, my King;
The heaven I shall inherit
Makes me rejoice and sing.

Text Information
First Line: If God Himself be for me
Title: If God Himself Be for Me
German Title: Ist Gott für mich, so trete
Author: Paul Gerhardt (1656)
Translator (from German): Richard Massie
Meter: 76.76 D
Language: English
Source: Praxis Pietatis Melica, by Johann Crüger (Frankfurt, Germany: 1656); Translation in Church Psalter and Hymn Book (Oxford, England: 1856), by Will­iam Mer­cer
Copyright: Public Domain
Tune Information
Composer: Lowell Mason (1823)
Meter: 76.76 D
Incipit: 13556 53171 43321
Key: E♭ Major
Copyright: Public Domain

Adobe Acrobat image: Adobe Acrobat image
(Cyber Hymnal)
MIDI file: MIDI File
(Cyber Hymnal)
Noteworthy Composer score: Noteworthy Composer score
(Cyber Hymnal)
XML score: XML score
More media are available on the tune authority page.

Suggestions or corrections? Contact us