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Cantata BWV 181
Leichtgesinnte Flattergeister
English Translation in Parallel Format
Cantata BWV 181 - Scatterbrained frivolous people

Event: Solo Cantata for Sexagesima Sunday
Readings: Epistle: 2 Corinthians 11: 19 - 12: 9; Gospel: Luke 8: 4-15
Text: Anonymous

Biblical quotations in green font, chorales in purple

 

Original German Text

 

English Translation

1

Aria B

1

Aria [Bass]

 

Flauto traverso, Oboe, Violino I/II, Viola, Continuo

   
 

Leichtgesinnte Flattergeister
Rauben sich des Wortes Kraft.
Belial mit seinen Kindern
Suchet ohnedem zu hindern,
Dass es keinen Nutzen schafft.

 

Scatterbrained frivolous people
rob themselves of the Wordís power.
Belial with his children
anyhow seeks to obstruct it
so that it produces nothing useful.

       

2

Recitativo A

2

Recitativo [Alto]

 

Continuo

   
 

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 unfortunate state of perverted souls
who are as it were beside the way;
and who will recount Satanís cunning
when he robs the Word from the heart
that blind in judgement
neither understands nor believes in the harm being done to it.
Hearts of stone
that resist so maliciously
will forfeit their own salvation
and one day meet with destruction.
Christís last word had power
to split open the very rocks;
an angelís hand moved the gravestone
Yes, the staff of Moses there
could get water from a rock
Would you, o heart, be even harder?

       

3

Aria T

3

Aria [Tenor]

 

Continuo

   
 

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

 

The countless number of harmful thorns,
the anxieties of pleasure to increase its treasures,
- these things feed the fire of torment in hell
for eternity.

       

4

Recitativo S

4

Recitativo [Soprano]

 

Continuo

   
 

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.

 

By these things our strength is choked,
the precious seed just lies there useless
for people who are not rightly minded
in good time to prepare their hearts
to be good soil
so that our hearts may taste the sweetness
that this Word reveals,
the powers of this life and the life to come.

       

5

Coro

5

Chorus [S, A, T, B]

 

Tromba, Flauto traverso, Oboe, Violino I/II, Viola, Continuo

   
 

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.

 

Grant, o most high God, to us at all times
the heartís consolation, your holy Word.
Through your almighty hand

you alone can prepare a good fertile soil
in our hearts.

       

This Translation in Interlinear Format

English Translation by Francis Browne (February 2006)

Contributed by Francis Browne (February 2006)

Cantata BWV 181: Details & Complete Recordings | Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
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Last update: żAugust 4, 2012 ż00:26:32