O Mensch, bewein dein Sünde groß BWV 622
Another of the extraordinarily beautiful chorales from the Orgelbüchlein, Bach’s genius is revealed here in the incredibly expressive solo upper voice. Add to that the ending which is very unusual both harmonically and melodically as Bach summons the image of the cross – this is a truly great work.
O mankind, mourn your great sins,
for which Christ left His Father’s bosom
and came to earth;
from a virgin pure and tender
He was born here for us,
He wished to become our Intercessor,
He gave life to the dead
and laid aside all sickness
until the time approached
that He would be offered for us,
bearing the heavy burden of our sins
indeed for a long time on the Cross.