Monday, July 18, 2022

Deus Noster, Te Adoramus!

Heus! ("Hey" in Latin.) This morning my Bible reading, worship, and prayer time was in Ecclesiastical Latin. Here is a beautiful hymn called In Ecclesiis ("In the Congregations") by the one and only Giovanni Gabrieli. 

Good heavens! What a marvelous production. This music was so important for the development of later western music, and it remains wonderful. Nothing is perfect in this world, but I am ready to make an exception for the sacred music of the Renaissance. If you'd like to follow along, here are the words along with my translation:

In ecclesiis benedicite Domino. Alleluia.

In omni loco Dominationis benedic anima mea, Dominum. Alleluia.

In Deo salutari meo et gloria mea.

Dominus auxilium meum et spes mea in Deo est. Alleluia.

Deus noster, te invocamus, te adoramus.

Libera nos, vivifica nos. Alleluia.

Deus, adiutor noster in aeternum. Alleluia.

In the congregations, bless the Lord! Hallelujah. 

In every place of Lordship, bless the Lord, oh my soul! Hallelujah.

In God is my salvation and my glory.

The Lord is my help, and my hope is in God. Hallelujah.

Our God, we call upon you, we adore you. Hallelujah.

Deliver us, revive us! 

God is our helper forever. Hallelujah.

Aren't those marvelous words? I once read that the title of this hymn ("In Ecclesiis") is taken from the Latin Vulgate of the final verse of Psalm 25 (English: Psalm 26): 

Here's the Hebrew:

This is rendered "in the congregations" in the KJV and NKJV but as "in the great congregation" in the NIV and ESV, which is odd because the Hebrew is clearly plural. Possibly the idea here is that the worship of God is not simply private but also public -- wherever the people of God congregate to celebrate his mercies both temporal and eternal.  

Latin is such a wonderful tongue. I don't know why my heart resonates with it so much. Thank you, Lord! Te adoro!