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God Dwells in Light! – a hymn for Ḥanukkah by Rabbi Moritz Mayer (Ḳ.Ḳ. Beth Elohim 1856)


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God dwells in light!
His first commanding word on earth,
Which at creation’s glorious birth
Resounded, was: “Let there be light!”
The sun-lit beam
His tender stream.
Of love a symbol clear and bright.
God dwells in light!
Upon the lucid paths of life,
Redeemed from error, inward strife,
Let us proceed by wisdom led;
In happiness
And in distress,
The light of God be on us shed!
God dwells in light!
A holy, heav’nly spark in trust
He gave to ev’ry child of dust,
Prepared by Him, th’ Eternal One ;
A brilliant ray
To shine by day,
But not to set when life is gone.
God dwells in light!
He broke the sinner’s mighty hand,
And crushed the despot’s haughty band.
In glorious days of olden time;
And ne’er to wane
In Israel’s fane
Rekindled was His light sublime.
God dwells in light!
In Him, oh! let us now rejoice,
And raise to him the heart and voice,
Who worketh wonders evermore;
The guiltless tear
With light to cheer,
He changeth not, our God of yore!
God dwells in light!
He touched the champions’ pious hearts
With fire, that courage e’er imparts,
For faith above all time and space !
Guard truth and love,
Sent from above
Thou’lt triumph then, God’s priestly race!

“God dwells in light!,” by Rabbi Moritz Mayer, published in 1856, appears under the subject “Feast of Dedication” (i.e. Ḥanukkah) as Hymn 193 in Hymns Written for the Use of Hebrew Congregations (Penina Moïse et al., Ḳ.Ḳ. Beth Elohim, 1856), pp. 188-189. –Aharon Varady






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