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Hymn score of: Withhold not, Lord, the help I crave - Withdraw not thy hand from me (Carl Johann Philipp Spitta/Richard Massie/Johannes Thomas Rüegg)

Christ My Song - 1463

Withhold not, Lord, the help I crave - Withdraw not thy hand from me (Carl Johann Philipp Spitta/Richard Massie/
Johannes Thomas Rüegg)

Withdraw not thy hand from me.

1. Withhold not, Lord, the help I crave,
  forsake not, nor forget me,
for from the cradle to the grave
  a thousand foes beset me.
    Alas! Thy child,
    deceived, beguiled,
  to guide himself unable,
    in devious ways
    of error strays,
  blind, feeble, and unstable.

2. But now, my God, I have, by thee
  so graciously invited,
found the good way, where I may be
  with thee henceforth united.
    Yes, I am thine,
    and thou art mine –
  I say it with emotion;
    O leave not me,
    who cleave to thee
  with faith and true devotion.

3. Thou know'st my heart; – ah! leave not me
  a prey to its devices,
when it would lead me far from thee
  through Satan's artifices.
    Let me, O God,
    tame flesh and blood,
  and flee all sin and folly,
    that I may be
    conformed to thee,
  true, just, and pure, and holy.

4. We live, alas! in evil days;
  O let thy Spirit warn me,
ere yet the world to her false ways
  and practices hath drawn me.
    Unharmed, unstained,
    by thee sustained,
  though threatened, jeered, and taunted;
    let me, I pray,
    hold on my way,
  calm, silent, yet undaunted.

5. To guard and keep me never cease,
  from all that is defiling;
preserve me also from false peace,
  when life is smooth and smiling.
    Should dangers rise,
    and me surprise,
  and clouds around me gather,
    teach me to pray,
    and childlike say,
  "Help me, my God and Father."

6. Let me throughout my life esteem
  thy word as precious manna,
and make thy Name my constant theme,
  my song and my hosanna;
    thy Son alone,
    the gracious throne
  where I may find compassion;
    his precious blood
    my strength and food,
  and shield against temptation.

7. Then take not, Lord, thy hand away,
  withdraw not thy protection,
but grant me to the grave, I pray,
  thy guidance and direction.
    At my last end
    I will commend
  to thee my soul and spirit;
    then shall I be,
    my God, with thee,
  and endless joy inherit.

Richard Massie, Lyra Domestica II, 1863, 27-29.
Translated from the German Zieh deine Hand nicht von mir ab
of Carl Johann Philipp Spitta.

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