Meter: Long Meter (18.104.22.168.)
Text: © 2009; alt., © 2022
Preserve Your holy church, O Lord,
From ev’ry strife and all discord
That pure and holy she may be
To sing Your praise eternally.
Pure doctrine grant, that she may stand
Against the foes on ev’ry hand,
Who seek to slay Your truth outright
And fill Your church with falsehood’s blight.
O heav’nly Truth please dwell herein,
So that Your bride be kept from sin;
Defend from all satanic wiles,
And purge all error that beguiles.
Defiling masses press us sore,
And heretics sprout all the more
When purely preached, Lord, is Your word;
Your church thence cries, “Come quickly Lord!”
Chief Shepherd come so that at length
We may be guarded by Your strength;
Repel each error by Your stave,
And us from all th’impious save.
Man’s pride is great—Lord it subdue,
For it now wars ‘gainst all that’s true!
It seeks to cast o’er Christ a shade;
‘Tis only curbed by heav’nly aid.
Our pride it also wars within;
It brings us doubt so that we sin.
We think we’re wise, and e’en so bold
To tell You how to guide Your fold.
Our aid is Christ, who tarries not
For He removes our ev’ry blot,
He too now ends His bride’s lament
By means of Word and Sacrament.
O Jesus, You now defend us,
For this our gladness shall be thus:
That of Your Church You are the guide
For she came forth from Your riv’n side!
This consolation stands fore’er
That Christ shall always be with her.
He is the best and trusty One,
The Overseer who leads from heav’n.
O Christ, we know what the truth is,
And our confession shall be this:
“A holy Christian church shall be
On earth and through eternity.”