August 19, 2013

Who Are These Like Stars Appearing?

Praising Loud Their Heavenly King

Who Are These Like Stars Appearing? is a translation of the 1719 German hymn, Wer sind die vor Gottes Throne by the Protestant pastor and theologian, Theobald Heinrich Schenck (1656-1727). In 1841 it was translated into English by Frances Elizabeth Cox (1812-1897) and published as part of her collection, Sacred Hymns from the German. It is sung to the tune All Saints (Darm­stadt) first published in 1698. It can also be sung to the tune: Unser Herrscher, as featured in the following video. In the Divine Office, Who Are These Like Stars Appearing? is sung on Feast Days of Saints and Angels.

Tune: Unser Herrscher

WHO ARE THESE LIKE STARS APPEARING? by Fran­ces E. Cox, 1841 (Public Domain)

1. Who are these like stars appearing,
These before God’s throne who stand?
Each a golden crown is wearing;
Who are all this glorious band?
Alleluia! Hark, they sing,
Praising loud their heav’nly King.

2. Who are these of dazzling brightness,
These in God’s own truth arrayed,
Clad in robes of purest whiteness,
Robes whose luster ne’er shall fade,
Ne’er be touched by time’s rude hand?
Whence come all this glorious band?

3. These are they who have contended
For their Savior’s honor long,
Wrestling on till life was ended,
Following not the sinful throng;
These who well the fight sustained,
Triumph through the Lamb have gained.

4. These are they whose hearts were riven,
Sore with woe and anguish tried,
Who in prayer full oft have striven
With the God they glorified;
Now, their painful conflict o’er,
God has bid them weep no more.

5. These, like priests, have watched and waited,
Offering up to Christ their will;
Soul and body consecrated,
Day and night to serve Him still:
Now in God’s most holy place
Blest they stand before His face.

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