Paul Gerhardt – Meyer Minute

Posted from the “Meyer Minute” that Pres. Dale Meyer sends out daily:

Today is the 400th anniversary of the birth of hymn writer Paul Gerhardt. Born March 12, 1607 , Gerhardt experienced terrible suffering. His childhood home was destroyed in the Thirty Years War, a war that killed over 20% of Germany ’s population. Gerhardt’s wife and four of his five children died from disease. Struggles between the government and church cost him his job. So when this hymn writer wrote about troubles in life, he knew whereof he spoke.

“Entrust your days and burdens / to God’s most loving hand; / He cares for you while ruling / the sky, the sea, the land. / For He who guides the tempest / along their thunderous ways / will find for you a pathway / and guide you all your days.” Dr. Uwe Siemon-Netto contrasts that Gerhardt verse to the following contemporary Christian ditty: “He is able more than able / To accomplish what concerns me today/ He is able more than able / To handle anything that comes my way.” Which song offers more substance to support you in times of trouble?

Christian Moeller says Gerhardt belonged to an era “which was attentive to doctrinal clarity, and therefore sang with clarity. I do wish the days of doctrinal clarity came back…leading to more clarity in people’s lives and song.” (“The Lutheran Witness,” March, 2007; pp. 24-25).

Copyright (c) Dale A Meyer 2007


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