If you were a parishioner going to the Lutheran Church in Weimar, Germany on the 3rd Sunday of Lent, March 24, 1715, you would be exposed to what would become the 54th Cantata of JS Bach entitled “Stand Steadfast Against Transgressions“…..Bach’s Church Cantatas are based on Scriptures related to the Lutheran Liturgical Season calendar…In this performance there is but one woman’s voice, an alto…..The instruments are 2 violins, a viola, a cello, a bass, and pipe organ…..The mood of the 3-movement piece is sober in keeping with the overall reflective, purple mood of Lent…..What is striking when learns what was done in Christian Churches of yesterdays is folk apparently came to Church 3 consecutive days for Christmas & Easter…..There is little doubt that the Church and it’s doings of yore played a far bigger part in the common persons life compared to today….. A quick review of Traditional Christianity follows…..He or She believes in the Authority of the Bible which speaks of a Triune God…..Christ sacrificial crucifixion atones for the sins of all it matters to…..Christ’s resurrection and ascension into heaven are proof of His identity and God’s sin forgiveness for humans that feel the need for it…..Following Christ is a choice that some are compelled, for a variety of reasons, to make…..The ideal Christian life is achieved by allowing the Holy Spirit to lead him or her to live a morally and ethically (read: 10 Commandments, examples of Christ, and so on)…..A Christian should feel the need to help a lost world find itself and God/Christ along the way….The celebration of the Eucharist or Lord’s Supper by a follower basically commemorates and reaffirms what she or he believes…..The rest of Christianity is controversial, less important, but still fun to talk about with people that have the right attitude towards our latitude (Romans 14-15:13) in beliefs …..The English language translation of German language Cantata follows…..
ARIA…..Stand firm against sin, otherwise its poison seizes hold of you…..Do not let Satan blind you for to desecrate the honor of God meets with a curse, which leads to death.
RECITATIVE…..The nature of loathsome sins is indeed from outside very beautiful; but you must afterwards with sorrow and frustration experience much hardship…..From outside it is gold but if you want to look more closely it is shown to be only an empty shadow and whitewashed tomb…..It is like the apples of Sodom and those who join with it do not reach God’s kingdom…..It is like a sharp sword that goes through our body and soul.
ARIA…..Who commits sin is of the devil, for it is he who has produced them…..But if against its despicable mobs with true devotion you stand firm, sin has at once fled away.
I’m curious to any and all reactions and commentaries to all of this…..