1532 - 1608 Person Name: Martin Schalling, 1532-1608 Author of "Lord, let Thy blest angelic bands" in Offices of Worship and Hymns Schalling, Martin, son of Martin Schalling, sometime pastor at Strassburg (after 1543, pastor at Weitersweiler, near Saarbrücken), was born at Strassburg, April 21, 1532. He matriculated, in 1550, at the University of Wittenberg, where he became a favourite pupil of Melanchthon, and a great friend of Nicolaus Selnecker. After taking his M.A., he continued, for a short time, at Wittenberg as lecturer; and then became, in 1554, diaconus at Regensburg. The Superintendent at Regensburg, at that time, was Nicolaus Gallus, a strong partisan of Matthias Flach; and as Schalling thought it his duty to preach against Flacianism he had to give up his post in 1558; but soon after was appointed diaconus at Amberg, in Bavaria (Oberpfalz). When, in 1568, after the Elector Friedrich III., of the Palatinate, had adopted Calvinistic opinions as to order of service, &c, all the Lutheran clergy who would not conform were expelled, Schalling had to leave Amberg. But as Duke Ludwig, the son of the Elector, continued a Lutheran, he allowed Schalling to minister to the Lutherans at Vilseck, near Amberg. After Ludwig became Regent of the Oberpfalz he recalled Schalling to Amberg, in 1576, as court preacher and superintendent; and when, after his father's death, on Oct. 24, 1576, he became Elector of the Pfalz, he appointed Schalling as General-Superintendent of the Oberpfalz, and also court preacher at Heidelberg. But when the clergy of the Oberpfalz were pressed to sign the Formula of Concord, Schalling hesitated to subscribe, holding that it dealt too harshly with the followers of Melanchthon. For this action he was banished from the court at Heidelberg; and after being confined to his house at Amberg, from 1580 to March 1583, he was finally deprived of his offices. Thereafter he stayed for some time at Altdorf, but was appointed, 1585, pastor of St. Mary's church in Nürnberg, where he remained until blindness compelled him to retire. He died at Nürnberg, Dec. 19 (29), 1608 (Koch, ii. 282, &c.).
Though the above notice might seem to indicate that Schalling was an ardent polemic, yet this was not so. He was naturally a moderate man, and a man of peace; but during the period of 1550 to 1600, Protestant Germany was rent asunder by all manner of controversies, in which hardly any one with a conscience or an opinion could avoid being involved. Only one hymn by him is known, but that justly ranks among the classic hymns of Germany. It is:—
Herzlioh Lieb hab ich dich, 0 Herr. For the Dying. This was, apparently, written about 1567, and was first published in Kurtze und sonderliche Newe Symbola etlicher Fürsten, &c. Nürnberg, 1571; and thence in Wackernagel, iv., p. 788, in 3 stanzas of 12 lines…
The translations in common use are:—
1. Thee, Lord, I love with sacred Awe. In full, by J. C. Jacobi, in his Psalmodia Germanica, pt. ii., 1725. p. 51 (1732, p.194); repeated in the Moravian Hymn Book, 1754, pt. i., No. 312…
2. My heart, 0 Lord, its love on Thee. A good and full translation by A. T. Russell, as No. 185, in his Psalms & Hymns, 1851.
3. With all my heart I love Thee, Lord. A good and full translation by H. G. de Bunsen, for Mercer's C. Psalm and Hymn Book, ed. 1857, No. 105
4. Lord, all my heart is fixed on Thee. A good and full translation by Miss Winkworth, in her Lyra Germanica, 2nd Ser., 1858, p. 164.
Other translations are:—
(l) "I love Thee, Lord, with love sincere." By Dr. H. Mills, 1845, p. 80 (1856, p. 112). (2) "0 Lord! I love Thee from my heart." In Schaff’s Christ in Song, 1869, p. 609. (3) “Lord, Thee I love with all my heart." By R. Massie, in the Day of Rest 1811. [Rev. James Mearns, M.A.]
--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)