Wolves and Bears

Lieder der Hutterischen Brüder, 667

Dare you fight and struggle? If so, pack up and choose the narrow way! Wolves and bears will spring at you from every side. Men will try to murder you, but your captain will go on ahead. Follow him!

Let us fight like knights Lord, at your command! Let us follow you tightly into attack, striking where you tell us, moving quickly, boldly, completely in your control. Everything Lord, let us risk for you. Though they kill us, we know you will give us life again.

Captain, hero, we have no defence but you! You lead us straight into battle against the serpents of hell—against the pope and his infernal horde that rules the earth. But we know it cannot last long. We strike the Antichrist with a double-edged sword. Though he mocks us, rapes us, puts us to shame, cuts off our heads, and burns us alive, we know we shall win if we persevere to the end.

Let us love so our lives may shine, an example for those in the wicked world—for those in the night of perversion that hunger and thirst for the Way.

Be bold! Be courageous, all that suffer under wicked kings and lords. To hell they must go! The devil’s kingdom they represent and because they shed innocent blood, robbing the pious and oppressing the poor, the Lord will fling them into eternal fire.

At the same time the pious, though purified in the heat like gold, will shine in resplendent clarity before the King.

Give yourselves to Christ, once and for all! Plunge into battle, brave knight, with the heavenly host and don’t let the godless rejoice over you.

When you tear off your worldly clothes, everyone will hoot and roar with disgust. But pay them no attention. In white linen you will stand before God. He will brush off your tears, pay you a stupendous wage, and set you with him on the throne!

Hänsl Zwinger,      -1568, Anabaptist leader in Moravia

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