Speaking of Bach, I was preparing a sermon on coveting and contentment. I’d decided to title it, “Enough” (available for listening here). The next day, I’m listening online to a weekly radio program, called The Bach Hour. Each week, it plays one of Bach’s cantatas with translation. This day it was No. 82. based on Jesus’ presentation as a baby in the temple and Simeon’s response, “Let your servant now depart in peace!” (Luke 2:22-35)
1. I have enough,
I have taken the Savior, the hope of the righteous,
into my eager arms;
I have enough!
I have beheld Him,
my faith has pressed Jesus to my heart;
now I wish, even today with joy
to depart from here.
2. I have enough.
My comfort is this alone,
that Jesus might be mine and I His own.
In faith I hold Him,
there I see, along with Simeon,
already the joy of the other life.
Let us go with this man!
Ah! if only the Lord might rescue me
from the chains of my body;
Ah! were only my departure here,
with joy I would say, world, to you:
I have enough.
3. Fall asleep, you weary eyes,
close softly and pleasantly!
World, I will not remain here any longer,
I own no part of you
that could matter to my soul.
Here I must build up misery,
but there, there I will see
sweet peace, quiet rest.
4. My God! When will the lovely ‘now!’ come,
when I will journey into peace
and into the cool soil of earth,
and there, near You, rest in Your lap?
My farewells are made,
world, good night!
5. I delight in my death,
ah, if it were only present already!
Then I will emerge from all the suffering
that still binds me to the world.
(p.s. Ten of Bach’s children and his wife died in his lifetime.)
A few days later, I visited a dear sister in Christ in our church, who was near death after a long fight with cancer. I shared Bach’s words with her husband. He asked me to read it at her Memorial Service.