What God Ordains is Always Good
Samuel Rodigast (1649–1708) wrote today’s HYMN OF THE DAY (760) presumably for the man who wrote the tune, Severus Gastorius (1646–1682) when he was sick and desired a hymn for his funeral. It contains Christ’s teachings clearly, especially the Holy Gospel from St. Matthew 6.
St. Paul says that we should teach and admonish one another with hymns (Colossians 3.16). This hymn teaches and admonishes to consider the providence of God. Since we know God as our friend and Father through Jesus, we know that he will provide for us and take care of us in every circumstance. Singing this hymn exercises our faith as we consider the fourth petition (give us this day our daily bread), and the third petition (Thy will be done). This hymn asserts that no matter what happens (joy or woe), “Someday I shall see clearly / That He has loved me dearly,” and that “No poison can be in the cup / That my Physician sends me.” It changes our anxieties about the present and future into confident expressions of faith in God’s goodwill towards us in Christ.
The PRELUDE is a partita on this hymn by Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706). Pachelbel’s music represents the height of the south German organ tradition, and his contributions to the development of the chorale prelude make him one of the most influential middle Baroque composers. Pachelbel served as organist in a number of German cities, concluding his career in Nuremberg. A recording of the Prelude can be heard here:
The introduction is a setting of by Kevin Hildebrand, kantor of Concordia Theological Seminary and St. Paul’s—Fort Wayne.
The VOLUNTARY is a setting for organ and two instruments (today played on clarinet and cello) by Donald Busarow (1934-2011). Educated at Concordia University—River Forest, Cleveland Institute of Music, and Michigan State University, he served as musician in parishes in Detroit, Cleveland, and Milwaukee. He taught at Concordia College—Milwaukee and Wittenberg College—Springfield, OH.
The lessons are 1 Kings 17.8–16; Galatians 5.25—6.10; and St. Matthew 6.24–34.
The hymns are: 916 Only-Begotten, Word of God Eternal; 760 What God Ordains is Always Good; 745 In God, My Faithful God; 732 All Depends on Our Possessing; 624 The Infant Priest Was Holy Born; 750 If Thou But Trust in God to Guide Thee