Rothe was born in Silesia and studied at Leipzig University, and in 1712 was licensed as a general preacher. Zinzendorf was greatly impressed by his preaching, and gave him the pastorate at Berthelsdorf. There Rothe took a great interest in the Moravian community at Herrnhut. In 1737 he had to report to the authorities regarding the doctrinal view of the Moravians, Zinzendorf became offended and Rothe accepted a call to another parish. Rothe wrote about forty hymns, all of which first appeared in Zinzendorf’s hymn-books.This hymn was translated into English by John Wesley
Now I have found the ground wherein
Sure my soul’s anchor may remain,
The wounds of Jesus, for my sin
Before the world’s foundation slain;
Whose mercy shall unshaken stay,
When Heaven and earth are fled away.
Father, Thine everlasting grace
Our scanty thought surpasses far:
Thy heart still melts with tenderness,
Thy arms of love still open are,
Returning sinners to receive,
That mercy they may taste and live.
O Love, Thou bottomless abyss!
My sins are swallowed up in Thee!
Covered is my unrighteousness,
Nor spot of guilt remains on me,
While Jesus’ blood, through earth and skies,
Mercy, free, boundless mercy, cries!
With faith I plunge me in this sea;
Here is my hope, my joy, my rest:
Hither, when hell assails, I flee,
I look into my Saviour’s breast!
Away, sad doubt, and anxious fear!
Mercy is all that’s written there.
Though waves and storms go o’er my head,
Though strength, and health, and friends be gone,
Though joys be withered all and dead,
Though every comfort be withdrawn,
On this my steadfast soul relies,
Father, Thy mercy never dies.
Fixed on this ground will I remain,
Though my heart fail, and flesh decay:
This anchor shall my soul sustain,
When earth’s foundations melt away;
Mercy’s full power I then shall prove,
Loved with an everlasting love.