Text: Theoktistus of the Studium (9th century). Tune: Ralph Alvin Strom (1901-1977)
1. Jesus Name all names above, Jesus, best and dearest, Jesus, fount of perfect love, Holiest, tenderest, nearest; Jesus, source of grace completest, Jesus, purest, Jesu sweetest, Jesus, well of power divine, Make me, keep me, seal me Thine.
2. Jesus, open me the gate, That the robber entered, Who in that most lost estate Wholly on Thee ventured. Thou whose wounds are ever pleading, And Thy passion interceding, From my misery let me rise To a home in paradise.
3. Jesus, crowned with thorns for me, Scourged for my transgression, Witnessing through agony, That Thy good confession; Jesus, clad in purple raiment, For my evil making payment, Let not all Thy woe and pain, Let not Calvary be in vain.
4. When I reach death’s bitter sea, And its waves mount higher, Earthly help forsaking me As the storm draws nigher, Jesus, leave me not to languish Helpless, homeless, full of anguish; Jesus, let me hear Thee say, Thou shalt be with Me today. Tr. John Mason Neale
I JESU NAVN SKAL AL VOR GJERNING SKE Text: Johan Fredricksen (1604-1441) Tune: Kingo’s Gradual 1699
1 In Jesus' name Our work must all be done If it shall compass our true good and aim, And not end in shame alone; For ev'ry deed Which in it doth proceed, Success and blessing gains Till it the goal attains. Thus we honor God on high And ourselves are blessed thereby; Wherein our true good remains.
2 In Jesus' name We praise our God on high, He blesses them who spread abroad His fame, And we do His will thereby. E'er hath the Lord Done great things by His Word, And still doth bare His arm His wonders to perform; Hence we should in ev'ry clime Magnify His name sublime, Who doth shield us from all harm.
3 In Jesus' name We live and we will die; If then we live, His love we will proclaim; If we die, we gain thereby. In Jesus' name, Who from heav'n to us came, We shall again rise To meet Him in the skies, When at last, saved by His grace, We shall see Him face to face, Live with Him in Paradise. Tr. George Rygh (18
MEDITATION (somewhat revised from a previous blog) Happy New Year! January 1 is Jesus’ Name Day, eight days after his birth. It was customary to give the baby boy his name on the day of his circumcision and Jesus’ parents followed the command of the angels to name him Jesus—Savior: “For he shall save his people from their sins.” Matt 1:21; Luke 1:31. The eighth day has an important resonance throughout the life of Jesus and thus the church. Jesus rose on the eighth day—Sunday is known as the eighth day-- so in celebrating Sunday every week we are remembering the resurrection and the new reality that Jesus established in his resurrection.
Christian theology also understood that in the circumcision Jesus shed his first blood for us. Richard Crashaw, a Catholic English poet of the Baroque era, and John Milton, wrote some of their best poetry on the ceremony. The occasion was included as the first of what the medieval church named the Seven Sorrows of Mary. Luther in a sermon on the tradition noted that the name was given by the angels, as well as Joseph, who in giving him the name, officially adopted him, like the Pharaoh’s daughter who named Moses and took him as her own. Luther loved that we received our names when we are christened—made Christians—and we now have names that God knows and can use in calling us. In this rite, “we receive a name that is over all names and a blessing so great that our hearts can be joyful and free.”
It was common in the past, and still should be, to begin the year in the name of Jesus. Elisabeth Fedde, the founder of the Deaconess Hospital in Brooklyn and Minneapolis made a practice of doing so, looking back over the previous year and then toward the future. She prayed the prayer of the second hymn, the first hymn in the Norwegian hymnal at the time: “In Jesus Name let all our work be done.” It was the hymn with which many Norwegian institutions began their work and with which they greeted the New Year. Musekgo Lutheran Church began its ministry with this song as did Mindekirken and thousands of Norwegian congregations here and in Norway. It is the motto of Menighetsfakultet in Oslo.
So with all the church who celebrate this day as Jesus Name Day, let us begin this New Year in Jesus’ Name! Rejoice in what we have been given by our Savior: a new name, a new life, a new beginning, a wonderful way to begin the New Year!
The Circumcision and Naming of Jesus
This cut drew the first blood of our Lord,
Submitting to the Law, the Holy One,
To show the covenant in flesh and blood,
Now Son of Joseph, who took him as his own,
Naming him Jesus, as Pharaoh’s daughter named
Moses, drawing him out of the river Nile.
All righteousness fulfilled, our Lord became
What he was meant to be, his Father’s child
Come to redeem the world, to live with us
Obeying all the ordinary rules.
For what? To bleed and die upon a cross,
To show us how he is the God of fools
And sages. A God incarnate, filled with life.
And so we watch with wonder, the hand, the knife.
from Jesus the Harmony by Gracia Grindal copyright Fortress Press 2021
The first text is by a rather unknown Greek writer Theoktistus of the Studium, a monk in Constantinople, during the 9th century. John Mason Neale (1818-1866), is the translator. It became part of the gift that the Anglo-Catholic movement gave English speaking Christians with their many translations of early and medieval hymns.
The tune by Ralph Alvin Strom, who lived and worked in St. Paul in congregations associated with The Augustana Synod, was composed for this text in the SBH, but used in the LBW for a marriage text. The tune, probably preferred over the text, really got buried in the marriage section, but it is a lovely romantic tune in which one can hear Swedish echoes.
"In Jesus Name shall all our work be done" was the first hymn in the Landstad hymnal. Fredricksen wrote it as a hymn for his wedding in 1639. He served as rector in Roskilde. The tune appeared in the Kingo gradual in 1699. It was known and loved, but it is difficult to sing if one does not know it.
Begin your New Year in Jesus' Name by contemplating these hymns and sources for this day
At the Name of Jesus--Hymn 62--
Navnet Jesus--by the Oslo Gospel Choir Hymn 117
Bach has several cantata's for New Year's Day. See the links below)
JESUS NAME, ALL NAMES ABOVE
Strom’s tune by Gerard Sundberg, lovely version
Ralph Strom’s tune/bad recording but you can hear the lovely tune
Jesus Name all names above, another tune St. Theoktistus by F. A. Gore Ouseley (1825-1889)
St. Theoktistus tune/piano https://youtu.be/ObsMAmFReF4
IN JESUS NAME, LET ALL OUR WORK BE DONE Organ playing In Jesus Name shall all our work be done
Hans Iversen--the old folk way of singing a tune https://youtu.be/Vju29GpaPfk
The Christmas Oratorio 4-6 Harnoncort directing
Four is for New Year's Day, Five, the Sunday after Christmas, Six Epiphany
Bach's Cantata BWV 41 for the New Year