The New Testament: John Wesleys Translation
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A collection of devotional readings by A.
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The Laridian Book of Classic Hymns is a collection of lyrics from over public domain hymns, including author and date written when known as well as referenced or related Scripture verses for each hymn. Gives you practical, concise insight on every verse in the New Testament. Too many Christians are intimidated by the thought of speaking to others about Jesus.
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Seven of the hymns that Wesley translated are by Zinzendorf; four by Gerhardt; four by Scheffler; two by Tersteegen; two by Freylinghausen; two by C. Dessler, J.
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Winckler, J. Gotter, and A. Spangenberg; and one is a cento from four hymns by Zinzendorf, Johann Nitschmann, and Anna Nitschmann.
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Freylinghausen was the son-in-law and successor of A. Francke, the founder of the Orphan House at Halle. Richter was the physician of the Orphan House. Joachim Lange was Professor of Divinity at Halle.
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Winckler was a Pietist clergyman. Gottfried Arnold , a distinguished ecclesiastical historian, was a disciple of Spener, the founder of Pietism.
Sigismund Christian Gmelin was a Separatist who had a variegated career, but was in touch with Pietists all his life. Then, in addition to Zinzendorf, there are three other Moravians whose hymns Wesley translated. Dober, one of the bishops of the Brethren, and A. Spangenberg , who had been Assistant Professor of Divinity at Halle, was the most learned and lovable of the Moravians, and became also one of their bishops.
Thus, excepting the classical hymns of Gerhardt , Scheffler , and Tersteegen , practically all the rest of the hymns that Wesley translated were the product of the two great and closely related spiritual movements that had their head quarters at Halle and at Herrnhut. The translations from the German were all published between and They were probably all written by In November, , when many German troops were encamped on the Town Moor at Newcastle-on-Tyne, in consequence of the Rebellion, he wrote in his Journal: I observed many Germans standing disconsolate at the skirts of the congregation.
To these I was constrained though I had discontinued it so long to speak a few words in their own language. Immediately they gathered up close together, and drank in every word. It is probable, however, that this was merely a case of furbishing up his German to read a book of which he was in special need. In his knowledge of German, as in so much else, Wesley was a pioneer.
It was not until the end of the eighteenth century, at the time when the fame of Goethe and Schiller was filtering through into England, that Englishmen began to regard German as a language worth learning. It would be possible to count on the fingers of one hand the distinguished Englishmen who knew German in Translated Hymns John Wesley's versions of German hymns are amongst the very finest examples of translated verse in the language. They stand the supreme test of a translator's art, for they are as vigorous and as poetical as the originals.
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They read as if they had been written in English. His own standard of translation varied. Sometimes his version is as literal as it could be, to retain freedom of poetical movement, as, for example, in the stanza: O Love, Thou bottomless abyss! My sins are swallowed up in Thee. Covered is my unrighteousness, Nor spot of guilt remains on me, While Jesu's blood, through earth and skies Mercy, free, boundless mercy, cries!
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In other hymns, again, the English does little more than express the central thought of the German, as in the lines: Through Thy rich grace, in Jesu's blood Blessing, redemption, life we find.