Rejoice! Rejoice, Believers

Representative Text

1 Rejoice, rejoice, believers,
and let your lights appear;
the evening is advancing,
and darker night is near.
The Bridegroom is arising
and soon is drawing nigh.
Up, pray and watch and wrestle;
at midnight comes the cry.

2 The watchers on the mountain
proclaim the Bridegroom near;
go forth, as he approaches,
with alleluias clear.
The marriage feast is waiting;
the gates wide open stand,
Arise, O heirs of glory;
the Bridegroom is at hand.

3 You saints, who here in patience
your cross and suff'rings bore,
shall live and reign forever
when sorrow is no more.
Around the throne of glory
the Lamb you shall behold,
in triumph lay before him
your shining crowns of gold.

4 Our hope and expectation,
O Jesus, now appear;
arise, O Sun so longed for,
above this shadowed sphere.
With hearts and hands uplifted
we plead, O Lord, to see
the day of earth's redemption
that sets your people free.

Source: Christian Worship: Hymnal #493

Author: Laurentius Laurenti

Laurenti, Laurentius, son of Herr Lorenz, or Laurenti, a burgess of Husum, in Schleswig, was born at Husum, June 8, 1660. He entered the University of Rostock in 1681, and after a year and a half spent there, went to Kiel to study music. In 1684 he was appointed cantor and director of the music at the cathedral church at Bremen. He died at Bremen, May 29, 1722 (Koch, iv. 281; Rotermund's continuation of Jöcher's Gelehrten-Lexicon, iii. 1405, &c). Laurenti was one of the best hymn-writers of the Pietistic school. His hymns are founded on the Gospels for Sundays and Festivals, and they draw out the bearing on the Christian life of the leading thoughts therein contained. They are of noble simplicity; are Scriptural, fervent, and often of genu… Go to person page >

Translator: S. L. Findlater

Sarah Laurie Borthwick Findlater United Kingdom 1823-1907. Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, sister of Jane Laurie Borthwick, she married Erick John Findlater, a pastor in the Free Church of Scotland at Lochearnhead, Perthshire, and they had three daughters: Sarah Jemima, Mary Williamina, and Jane Helen. Findlater and her sister Jane's translations were collected in “German hymns from the land of Luther”, appearing in four volumes (1854-1862). As an author, Sarah wrote fiction, juvenile works, music scores, anthems, and musical parts. She died at Torquay, Devon, England. John Perry Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Rejoice, rejoice, believers! And let your lights appear
Title: Rejoice! Rejoice, Believers
German Title: Ermuntert euch, ihr Frommen
Translator: S. L. Findlater (1854)
Author: Laurentius Laurenti (1700)
Meter: D
Source: German
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain


Scripture References:
st. 1-2 = Matt. 25:1-13

Considered to be one of the finest hymn writers of the Pietistic period, Laurentius Laurenti wrote this text based on the parable of the wise and foolish maidens (Matt. 25: 1-13; see also 613). Stanzas 1 and 2 focus on the expected coming of the bridegroom; stanza 3 is a prayer for Christ's return to complete the work of redemption and to set his people free.

Born Lorenz Lorenzen (b. Husum, Schleswig, Germany, 1660; d. Bremen, Germany, 1722) in Schleswig (which at various times has been ruled by Denmark), Laurenti studied at the University of Rostock and in Kiel. In 1684 he moved to Bremen, where he was appointed music director and cantor in the Lutheran Cathedral Church. A well known writer of German hymns in the Pietist tradition, Laurenti based most of his hymn texts on the gospel lessons for the church year. They were published in Evangelia Melodica (1700).

Sarah Borthwick Findlater (b. Edinburgh, Scotland, 1823; d. Torquay, England, 907) translated the text into English and published it in Hymns from the Land of Luther (1854), a collection of 122 hymns translated by her (53 hymns) and her sister Jane Orthwick. Findlater was a fine linguist; as a translator of German chorales, she is considered second only to Catherine Winkworth (PHH 194). Findlater's husband, Eric John, was a pastor in the Free Church of Scotland in Lochearnhead, Perthshire. The Findlater parsonage was known as being literate and hospitable.

Liturgical Use:
During Advent, focusing on Christ's second coming.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook



Henry T. Smart (PHH 233) composed the tune in 1835 for use at a missions festival at Blackburn, Lancashire, England. For that festival, which celebrated the three-hundredth anniversary of the Reformation in England, the tune was set to Reginald Heber's (PHH 249) “From Greenland's Icy Mountains.”…

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GREENLAND, an example of the popular nineteenth-century practice of creating hymn tunes from the works of classical composers, is thought to be originally from one of J. Michael Haydn's (PHH 67) "Deutschen Kirchen Messen." The tune acquired its title from its occasional association with the text "Fr…

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