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Text for Cantata 181
Leichtgesinnte Flattergeister

Original German Text

English Translation

1. ARIA (Bass)

Leichtgesinnte Flattergeister
rauben sich des Wortes Kraft.
Belial mit seinen Kindern
suchet ohnedem zu hindern,
daß es keinen Nutzen schafft.

Simpleminded fickle souls
rob themselves of the word's might.
Belial (Satan) and his kindred
seek, all the more, to hinder
that nothing of use is achieved.

2. REZITATIV (Alt)

O unglückselger Stand verkehrter Seelen,
so gleichsam an dem Wege sind;
und wer will doch des Satans List erzählen,
wenn er das Wort dem Herzen raubt,
das, am Verstande blind,
den Schaden nicht versteht noch glaubt.
Es werden Felsenherzen,
so boshaft widerstehn,
ihr eigen Heil verscherzen
und einst zugrunde gehn.
Es wirkt ja Christi letztes Wort,
daß Felsen selbst zerspringen;
des Engels Hand bewegt des Grabes Stein,
ja, Mosis Stab kann dort
aus einem Berge Wasser bringen.
Willst du, o Herz, noch härter sein?

O calamitous state of perverted souls,
one like the other, along the path;
and yet who can describe the cunning of Satan
as he robs the word from the heart,
which, blind of reason,
neither understands nor believes its detriment.
Hearts turn to stone
so wickedly resisting,
forfeiting their own salvation
and all at once go under.
Yes, Christ's final words caused
stones themselves to fracture;
an angel's hand moved the stone from the tomb,
yes, Moses' staff back then would
bring forth water from the mount.
Will you, O heart, be harder still?

3. ARIA (Tenor)

Der schädlichen Dornen unendliche Zahl,
die Sorgen der Wollust, die Schätze zu mehren,
die werden das Feuer der höllischen Qual
in Ewigkeit nähren.

The treacherous thorns, endless in number,
the cares of lust to increase its treasures,
these will stoke the fires of hellís torment
in eternity.

4. REZITATIV (Sopran)

Von diesen wird die Kraft erstickt,
der edle Same liegt vergebens,
wer sich nicht recht im Geiste schickt,
sein Herz beizeiten zum guten Lande zu bereiten,
daß unser Herz die Süßigkeiten schmecket,
so uns dies Wort entdecket,
die Kräfte dieses und des künftgen Lebens.

From them the power will be stifled,
the noble seed lies sown in vain,
whomever does not truly engage in his spirit,
preparing, in good time, his heart for good soil,
that our hearts might taste its sweet rewards,
so in this word do we detect,
the power of this life and that to come.

5. CHOR

Laß, Höchster, uns zu allen Zeiten
des Herzens Trost, dein heilig Wort!
Du kannst nach deiner Allmachtshand
allein ein fruchtbar gutes Land
in unsern Herzen zubereiten.

Allow us, Most High, at every moment,
our heart's solace, your sacred word.
You alone, by your almighty hand,
can produce a fertile, good soil
within our hearts.


COMPOSED: February, 13 1724 (Leipzig) for Sexagesima (2nd Sunday before Lent)
LIBRETTIST: unknown
TRANSLATION: 2017 © Tobin Schmuck, NYC
Print by permission only, please.
Click here.

English Translations (English-10): Index by BWV Number | Index by Title | Index by Event | Note on English Translations


Texts & Translations: Main Page | Cantatas BWV 1-50 | Cantatas BWV 51-100 | Cantatas BWV 101-150 | Cantatas BWV 151-200 | Cantatas BWV 201-224 | Other Vocal BWV 225-249 | Chorales BWV 250-438 | Geistliche Lieder BWV 439-507 | AMN BWV 508-524 | Other Vocal 1081-1089 | BWV Anh | Chorale Texts | Emblemata | Sources | Poets & Composers
Discussions: Texts | Translations: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4



 

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Last update: Tuesday, November 21, 2017 11:26