Category: Lutheran

  • The Geneva Bible: The Reformers’ Bible

    What exactly is the Geneva Bible and what is its significance? The Geneva Bible was first published in 1560. It was the first translation to use chapter divisions and numbered verses and became the most popular version of its time because of the extensive marginal notes and annotations. Some of those notes were very controversial. […]

  • Water Baptism: A Reformed Examination of John 3:5

    When a person is baptized is it the water itself that regenerates? Or is it the washing by the Holy Spirit that regenerates? According to Calvin, and other Reformed commentators, the water in John 3:5 is not referring to water baptism. And it is the washing by the Holy Spirit that regenerates. And that alone. […]

  • Bach sacred cantata – Erschallet, ihr Lieder, erklinget, ihr Saiten! BWV 172

    Bach wrote this cantata, while in Weimar, on May 20, 1714, for Pentecost Sunday. The libretto is based on John 14:23–31. It is one of my very favorite Bach cantatas! The work is in six movements, and scored for four vocal soloists, four-part choir, three trumpets, timpani, oboe, bassoon and a string orchestra of two […]

  • J.S. Bach: Sacred Cantata: Es ist euch gut, daß ich hingehe, BWV 108

    BWV 108 (29 April 1725) concerns itself with Jesus’ promise of the Holy Ghost It opens with Jesus himself explaining that he has to leave to make room for his Spirit. The bass (vox Christi) sings in a beautifully quiet, stepping rhythm. In the following tenor aria the violin jumps up and down to illustrate […]

  • Bach and Theology: Was Bach and his music anti-Semitic or anti-Judaic?

    Baroque composer primus inter pares J.S. Bach was a man of the deep and profound Christian faith. He believed the chief aim of music is to glorify God. Bach would write on his musical manuscripts: SDG, Soli Deo Gloria – To God Alone the Glory, and JJ, Jesu Juva – Jesus Help. The topic of […]

  • Bach Magnifcat

    Magnificat in E-flat Major BWV 243a Composed in Leipzig, 1728-1731. First performed in Leipzig on either July 2nd or Christmas Day – December 25th, 1723.  Note: This work is not to be confused with Bach’s Magnificat in D Major (BWV 243) which is a revision of BWV 243a. This is my favorite performance of this […]

  • More on Bach's Mass in B Minor

    I just posted recently about Bach’s Mass in B Minor (BWV 232), but I had to post again after discovering my favorite recording of this work on YouTube! Here is a recording by the Taverner Consort and Players directed by Andrew Parrott in which  historically informed performance (HIP) practices are used. The alto parts are […]

  • Bach Mass in B Minor

    Mass in B minor (Messe in h-Moll) BWV 232 Bach composed this work in Leipzig, 1747-1749; It was mostly assembled from previous materials from 1724 onward. Netherlands Bach Society – Jos van Veldhoven, conductor Hana Blažíková, soprano 1 Anna Reinhold, soprano 2 David Erler, alto Thomas Hobbs, tenor Peter Harvey, bass This performance was recorded […]

  • Bach's St. John Passion

      J.S. Bach’s St. John Passion (Johannes-Passion) Passion in 2 Parts – BWV 245 Bach composed this work in Leipzig during 1727 for the Good Friday (the Friday before Easter) vesper services. It was written in 1723 during Bach’s first year as director of church music in Leipzig and was first performed on April 7, […]

  • Bach's Coffee Cantata

    This is a performance of Bach’s secular cantata Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht / Keep quiet, don’t chatter. Which is known popularly as the “Kaffeekantate” (Coffee Cantata).  BWV 211 This performance was brought to my attention by my dear, longtime friend Professor Christina Alexandris in Athens, Greece. This work is more similar to an Italian comic […]