The Unbelieving Heart

This hymn is based on the epistle lesson for Proper 27A (most recently Pentecost 23 on 11-12-17.) It demonstrates the difference in the attitudes of Christians and non-Christians toward death. Though we grieve at the death of those we love, we look forward to the sure and certain hope of the resurrection from the dead.

These are the ones coming out of the Great Tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Revelation 7:14b

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

The Unbelieving Heart

The unbelieving heart
is greatly grieved for those who die.
Without the love of Christ,
they have no hope on which to lie.
They tremble and they fear
what they believe the end
because this death their own
destruction does portend.

But we believe that Christ
Who once was dead is risen,
and so the death we see
does not become our prison.
Freed by His saving work:
His blood shed on the Tree,
the dead will yet arise!
From sin forever free.

For Christ Himself will come
from Heav’n with trumpet sounding,
and with a loud command,
the angel’s voice resounding,
those who have died in Christ
will rise and so shall we;
communing with the Lamb
for all eternity.

Tune: Was frag’ ich nach der Welt (6.7.6.7.6.6.6.6.)
Text: © 2016 Theo Kavouras (based on 1 Thessalonians 4:13ff)

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We Are Baptized into Life

Here is another Baptismal hymn I wrote. This text reinforces the Christian doctrine that we are baptized into Christ’s death and resurrection.

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

 

We are Baptized into Life

We are baptized into life
through the blessed Savior’s strife.
Though we die we yet shall rise;
hail the glorious Sacrifice!

Though our souls with sin have burned,
still salvation has been earned
through the merits of the Son.
Thus our life in heaven is won.

We have not the power to save,
trample sin nor death nor grave,
but the spotless Lamb alone
is our access to the Throne.

By the water and the Word
we are joined unto our Lord.
Now entitled to the Feast
dining with our heav’nly Priest

Tune: Innocents (7.7.7.7.)
Text: © 2016 Theo Kavouras

The Holy Altar Stands

This is another hymn I wrote for the dedication of our sanctuary. It was based on a sermon by our Pastor. We used it when we dedicated the new altar that was built for us by a member. The altar is pictured here:

clc altar

A fellow hymn writer called this text a “didactic doxology”, because it teaches the belief that the altar represents the throne of God, the table of the Feast, and the manger, cross, and tomb of Christ. In these capacities, all of Christian worship and Christian life revolves around the altar – not because of the furniture, but because of the things it represents.

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

The Holy Altar Stands


Dedicated to the members of Christ Lutheran Church, Cleveland, OH, on the occasion of dedicating a new sanctuary, September 25, 2016

The holy altar stands
Thy cherished earthly throne.
As table, manger, cross, and tomb
the way to Heav’n alone.

This table where we eat
and drink the Holy Priest
brings heav’n to earth in foretaste of
the perfect wedding feast.

The manger here we see
embodied in this shrine
where Jesus took on human flesh
that ours may be Divine.

The altar loud proclaims
the cross where Jesus died;
His blood to shed that we may live
an endless Eastertide.

The altar too proclaims
the glorious empty tomb
from whence He rose and now we live
released from Satan’s gloom.

Thine altar is the source
Of Christian worship true.
We leave here strengthened as we go
Thy sacred work to do.

Tune: Potsdam (S.M./6.6.8.6.)
Text: © 2016 Theo Kavouras

Jesus! Name of Wondrous Love

This is not so much a hymn as additional verses to an existing hymn. I woke up early this morning after a harrowing nightmare. As is my custom when that happens, I opened my Bible and spent time in prayer. Then I turned to writing something I would want to sing during times of trouble. The text touches on Christmas, Good Friday, and Easter – the story of our salvation. It can be used as a stand alone piece or with the verses added on to the hymn (LSB 900/TLH 114).

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

Jesus! Name of Wondrous Love/Jesus! Death of death and sin

Jesus! Death of death and sin
Balm for all my strife within
Gladness for the troubled soul
Giv’n for all to make us whole

Jesus! Born of Virgin pure
God made man, our sin to cure
Angels praise Him at His birth
Lord of heaven now on earth.

Jesus! Savior of our race
Prosecuted in our place
On the tree, Your side rent wide
Thus, we now are justified

Jesus! Risen Lord of all
From the grave you will recall
Me, a precious child of God
Joined to you in baptism’s flood.

Praise the Father and the Son
and the Spirit, Three in One
Praise our God in heav’n above
Praise our God the God of Love.

Tune: Gott Sei Dank
Text: © 2019 Theo Kavouras

Abide In Me

This hymn is based on John 15:7 and following, and seeks to clarify that we, the Baptized, reside in Christ. The text, tune, and setting are all my own work. My father gave me the idea for the hymn, and it is dedicated to him. A link to a PDF copy with the music is below the text.

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

Abide In Me

“Abide in me”, said Christ our Lord.
“The sprinkled water and my Word
Shall keep you safe from Satan’s grasp;
My heel has crushed the Evil Asp.”

“And if My words in you abide,
Ask what you wish; I will provide.
I am your Brother, Priest, and Friend
My richest blessings I will send.”

“This holy altar is My throne
Where Bride and Groom are made as one
This place from whence you are made new
Is where I now abide in you.”

“Now you abide within my love
And bear the fruit come from above.
My Father’s glory thus shown bright
To all the earth; a wondrous sight!”

Based on John 15:7ff
Tune: Bleib in mir
Text & Tune ©2018 Theo Kavouras

PDF with Music

I Am But a Wretched Sinner

I’ve been fighting with panic and anxiety for most of my adult life, but in 2015 I finally got some manner of control over these demons. So when I had a full-blown panic attack at work in the middle of 2018, it was more traumatic than usual. It lasted most of the evening and into the next day, and I found great comfort in the words of Psalm 86. This is my paraphrase of that Psalm. Since I was trying to follow the order of the Psalm as best I could, I ended up with a doxological verse in the middle of it. Unusual, for sure, but not unprecedented. If your congregation would find this too strange, simply sing that verse at the end.

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

I Am But a Wretched Sinner

I am but a wretched sinner, poor and needy; base and low.
Thus, I ask You, O Lord Jesus, turn Your ear to hear my woe.
Save my life from Satan’s clutches, in all terror guide me through
Since Your humble, sprinkled servant, baptized, now resides in You.

Cover me with grace and favor, for all day I cry to You.
Make me to resound with gladness as I lift my soul, anew.
For You, Lord, forgive in mercy, show’ring love on those who call,
By Your Blood and by Your Body, steadfast Love You give to all.

To my prayer Lord Jesus hearken, listen to my plea for grace.
In my strife I call upon You, Christ my Rock and hiding place.
Full assurance you will answer I am giv’n in Scripture true:
“Whatsoever you ask the Father in My Name He gives to you.”

Δ No god can to You be likened, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Nor are works of these gods equal with Your pow’r, Your might utmost.
All the nations You have fashioned come and worship You, O Lord.
Off’ring honor, praise, and glory for Your mercies here outpoured.

You alone, O greatest Sovereign are the God and Lord of all.
By the wondrous works You show us, Satan cow’rs beneath the Pall.
So, instruct me and direct me that I walk within Your truth.
Lead my heart to love Your name, Lord, and my troubled conscience sooth.

Thanks, I give to You, Lord Jesus, with my whole repentant heart.
And I glorify, fore’er the Name of which I am a part
By the Baptism of Your Spirit, You have shown Your Love to me
And Sheol is now no peril, from its grips I am set free.

Lord I pray to watch and keep me, brazen men around me growl
Ruthless, evil, vile their band is, led by Lucifer they howl
They do not set You before them, Satan is their only guide;
But by death and resurrection, You defend Your holy Bride.

You are gracious, slow to anger, and with steadfast Love o’erflow.
Give Your strength to me, the son of your maidservant here below.
Show me signs of Your great favor, put all evil men to shame,
Since You, Lord have showr’d me greatly and by death my life proclaim!

8.7.8.7.D
Tune: O du Liebe (Public Domain)
Text: ©2018 Theo Kavouras, based on Psalm 86 (Paraphrased quote from John 15:16)

We Dedicate This Temple

In 2015, our congregation was blessed to be gifted a church building, as we had, 5 years earlier, been forced to move out of a sanctuary that was aging and too large and expensive to maintain. We began our worship in a small temporary chapel while renovating the sanctuary. The finished product is pictured. In September of 2016, we held our first service in the sanctuary, and a few weeks later, we held a formal dedication service. The service was attended by nearly 200 area Lutherans and was a wonderful chance to praise God for His many good Gifts. I wrote this hymn for the occasion, and dedicated it to the members of Christ Lutheran Church. 

As with all hymns on this site, a free license for use is granted provided the copyright notice is maintained. If you so desire, you may give a freewill donation to my church. Please make a check payable to Christ Lutheran Church and send it to:

Christ Lutheran Church
ATTN: Theo Kavouras
13812 Bellaire Rd.
Cleveland, OH 44135

We Dedicate This Temple

Dedicated to the members of Christ Lutheran Church, Cleveland, OH, on the occasion of dedicating a new sanctuary, September 25, 2016

We dedicate this temple to You, O God, our Lord
where we receive Your Spirit, most graciously outpoured.
In mercy You have given Your Son to cleanse our sin
that we your holy people eternal life would win.

We pray that here You give us Your own inerrant Word
by means of faithful pastors who bear the Spirit’s sword,
and likewise by your Scripture proclaimed in purity,
we hear our own salvation: a blood-bought great decree.

Bestow upon the children You’ve gathered at this Font
redemption which our Savior by cross and tomb has bought.
Baptized into Christ’s body, united with His strife,
they join His resurrection and gain eternal life.

Your Body on this Altar, Your Blood, O Lord, provide.
Unite Yourself, Christ Jesus, unto Your Holy Bride.
This meal in, with, and under the forms of bread and wine
will grant us grace sufficient and fellowship divine.

We offer these petitions unto the Three in One:
The Father uncreated and His Begotten Son
and Holy Ghost proceeding: The Holy Trinity!
All honor, praise, dominion and power ever be!

Amen.

Tune: Ewing (7.6.7.6.D.)
Text: ©2016 Theo Kavouras