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Shall creatures of a meaner frame
Pay all their dues to thee;
Creatures, that never knew thy name,
That never lov'd like me?
Great God, create my soul anew, Conform my heart to thine; Melt down my will, and let it flow, And take the mould divine.
Seize my whole frame into thy hand; Here all my powers I bring: Manage the wheels by thy command, And govern every spring.
Then shall my feet no more depart,
Nor wandering senses rove; Devotion shall be all my heart,
And all my passions love.
Then not the Sun shall more than I His Maker's law perform,
Nor travel swifter though the sky, Nor with a zeal so warm.
GOD SUPREME AND SELF-SUFFICIENT.
WHAT is our God, or what his name,
Nor men can learn, nor angels teach!
He dwells conceal'd in radiant flame,
Where neither eyes nor thoughts can reach.
The spacious worlds of heavenly light,
Compar'd with him, how short they fall!
They are too dark, and he too bright.
Nothing are they, and God is All.
He spoke the wondrous word, and lo Creation rose at his command: Whilwinds and seas their limits know, Bound in the hollow of his hand.
There rests the Earth, there roll the spheres,
There Nature leans, and feels her prop:
But his own self-sufficience bears
The weight of his own glories up.
The tide of creatures ebbs and flows,
Measuring their changes by the Moon:
No ebb his sea of glory knows,
His age is one eternal Moon.
Then fly, my song, an endless round,
The lofty tune let Michael raise;
All Nature dwell upon the sound,
But we can ne'er fulfil the praise.
JESUS THE ONLY SAVIOUR. ADAM, our father and our head, Transgress'd; and justice doom'd us dead: The fiery law speaks all despair, There's no reprieve nor pardon there. Call a bright council in the skies; "Seraphs, the mighty and the wise, Say, what expedient can you give? That sin be damn'd, and sinners live? "Speak, are you strong to bear the load, The weighty vengeance of a God? Which of you loves our wretched race, Or dares to venture in our place?"
In vain we ask for all around
Stands silence through the heavenly ground:
There's not a glorious mind above
Has half the strength, or half the love.
But, O unutterable grace!
The Eternal Son takes Adam's place:
Down to our world the Saviour flies,
Stretches his naked arms, and dies.
Justice was pleas'd to bruise the God,
And pay its wrongs with heavenly blood;
What unknown racks and pangs he bore!
Then rose: The law could ask no more.
Amazing work! Look down, ye skies,
Wonder and gaze with all your eyes;
Ye heavenly thrones, stoop from above,
And bow to this mysterious love.
See, how they bend! see, how they look!
Long they had read th' eternal book,
And studied dark decrees in vain:
The cross and Calvary makes them plain. Now they are struck with deep amaze, Each with his wings conceals his face; Now clap their sounding plumes, and cry, "The wisdom of a Deity!".
Low they adore th' Incarnate Son,
And sing the glories he hath won;
Sing how he broke our iron chains,
How deep he sunk, how high he reigns.
Triumph and reign, victorious Lord,
By all thy flaming hosts ador'd:
And say, dear Conqueror, say, how long
Ere we shall rise to join their song.
Lo, from afar the promis'd day
Shines with a well-distinguish'd ray;
But my wing'd passion hardly bears
These lengths of slow delaying years.
Send down a chariot from above,
With fiery wheels, and pav'd with love;
Raise me beyond th' ethereal blue,
To sing and love as angels do.
THE heavens invite mine eye, The stars salute me round; Father, I blush, I mourn to lie Thus grovelling on the ground. My warmer spirits move, And make attempts to fly; I wish aloud for wings of love To raise me swift and high.
Beyond those crystal vaults,
And all their sparkling balls;
They're but the porches to thy courts,
And paintings on thy walls.
Vain world, farewell to you;
Heaven is my native air:
I bid my friends a short adieu,
Impatient to be there.
I feel my powers releas'd From their old fleshy clod; Fair guardian, bear me up in haste, And set me near my God.
CHRIST DYING, RISING, and reigning.
He dies! the heavenly lover dies!
The tidings strike a doleful sound
On my poor heart-strings: deep he lies
In the cold caverns of the ground.
Come, saints, and drop a tear or two
On the dear bosom of your God:
He shed a thousand drops for you,
A thousand drops of richer blood.
Here's love and grief beyond degree,
The Lord of Glory dies for men !
But lo, what sudden joys I see!
Jesus the dead revives again.
The rising God forsakes the tomb,
Up to his Father's court he flies;
Cherubic legions guard him home,
And shout him welcome to the skies.
Break off your tears, ye saints, and tell
How high our Great Deliverer reigns;
Sing how he spoil'd the hosts of Hell,
And led the monster Death in chains.
Say, "Live for ever, wondrous King!
Born to redeem, and strong to save!"
Then ask the monster, Where's his sting?
And where's thy victory, boasting Grave?
THE GOD OF THUNDER. O THE immense, th' amazing height, The boundless grandeur of our God, Who treads the worlds beneath his feet, And sways the nations with his nod! He speaks; and lo, all Nature shakes, Heaven's everlasting pillars bow; He rends the clouds with hideous cracks, And shoots his fiery arrows through. Well, let the nations start and fly At the blue lightning's horrid glare, Atheists and emperors shrink and die, When flame and noise torment the air. Let noise and flame confound the skies, And drown the spacious realms below; Yet will we sing the Thunderer's praise, And send our loud Hosannas through. Celestial King, thy blazing power Kindles our hearts to flaming joys; We shout to hear thy thunders roar, And echo to our Father's voice. Thus shall the God our Saviour come, And lightnings round his chariot play : Ye lightnings, fly to make him room; Ye glorious storms, prepare his way
How the poor sailors stand amaz'd and tremble!
While the hoarse thunder, like a bloody trumpet,
Roars a loud onset to the gaping waters
Quick to devour them,
Such shall the noise be, and the wild disorder,
(If things eternal may be like these earthly)
Such the dire terrour when the great Archangel
Shakes the creation;
Tears the strong pillars of the vault of Heaven,
Breaks up old marble, the repose of princes;
See the graves open, and the bones arising,
Flames all around them.
Hark, the shrill outeries of the guilty wretches!
Lively bright horrour, and amazing anguish, [lies
Stare through their eye-lids, while the living worm
Gnawing within them.
Thoughts, like old vultures, prey upon their heart-
And the smart tinges, when the eye beholds the
Lofty Judge frowning, and a flood of vengeance
Rolling afore him.
Hopeless immortals! how they scream and shiver,
While devils push them to the pit wide yawning
Hideous and gloomy to receive them headlong
Down to the centre!
Stop here, my fancy: (all away, ye horrid
Doleful ideas!) come, arise to Jesus,
How he sits God-like! and the saints around him
Thron'd, yet adoring!
THE DAY OF JUDGMENT,
Attempted in English Sapphic. WHEN the fierce North-wind with his airy forces Rears up the Baltic to a foaming fury; And the red lightning with a storm of hail comes Rushing amain down,
O may I sit there when he comes triumphant,
Dooming the nations! then ascend to glory,
While our Hosannas all along the passage
Shout the Redeemer.
And now they sink the lofty tone,
And gentler notes they play,
And bring th' Eternal Godhead down
To dwell in humble clay.
O sacred beauties of the Man! (The God resides within)
His flesh all pure, without a stain, His soul without a sin.
Then, how he look'd, and how he smil❜d,
What wondrous things he said!
Sweet cherubs, stay, dwell here a while,
And tell what Jesus did.
At his command the blind awake,
And feel the gladsome rays;
He bids the dumb attempt to speak,
They try their tongues in praise.
He shed a thousand blessings round
Where-e'er he turn'd his eye;
He spoke, and at the sovereign sound
The hellish legions fly.
Thus while with unambitious strife
Th' ethereal minstrels rove Through all the labours of his life, And wonders of his love,
In the full choir a broken string
Groans with a strange surprise; The rest in silence mourn their King, That bleeds, and loves, and dies.
Seraph and saint, with drooping wings,
Cease their harmonious breath;
No blooming trees, nor bubbling springs,
While Jesus sleeps in death.
Then all at once to living strains
They summon every chord,
Break up the tomb, and burst his chains,
And show their rising Lord.
Around the flaming army throngs
To guard him to the skies,
With loud Hosannahs on their tongues,
And triumph in their eyes.
In awful state the conquering God Ascends his shining throne,
While tuneful angels sound abroad The victories he has won.
Now let me rise, and join their song,
And be an angel too;
My heart, my hand, my ear, my tongue,
Here's joyful work for you.
I would begin the music here,
And so my soul should rise:
O for some heavenly notes to bear
My spirit to the skies!
There ye that love my Saviour sit; There I would fain have place, Among your thrones, or at your feet, So I might see his face.
I am confin'd to Earth no more, But mount in haste above,
To bless the God that I adore, And sing the Man I love.
FIRE, AIR, EARTH, AND SEA, PRAISE YE THE LORD.
EARTH, thou great footstool of our God
Who reigns on high; thou fruitful source
Of all our raiment, life and food;
Our house, our parent, and our nurse;
Mighty stage of mortal scenes,
Drest with strong and gay machines,
Hung with golden lamps around
(And flowery carpets spread the ground);
Thou bulky globe, prodigious mass,
That hangs unpillar'd in an empty space!
While thy unwieldy weight rests on the feeble air,
Bless that Almighty Word that fix'd and holds thee there.
Fire, thou swift herald of his face,
Whose glorious rage, at his command,
Levels a palace with the sand,
Blending the lofty spires in ruin with the base:
Ye heavenly flames, that singe the air,
Artillery of a jealous God,
Bright arrows that his sounding quivers bear
To scatter deaths abroad;
Lightnings, adore the sovereign arm that flings
His vengeance, and your fires, upon the heads of
Thou vital element, the Air,
Whose boundless magazines of breath
Our fainting flame of life repair,
[Death: And save the bubble man from the cold arms of And ye, whose vital moisture yields
Life's purple stream a fresh supply,
Sweet Waters, wandering through the flowery fields,
Or dropping from the sky;
Confess the Power whose all-sufficient name
Nor needs your aid to build, or to support our frame.
Now the rude Air, with noisy force,
Beats up and swells the angry Sea,
They join to make our lives a prey,
And sweep the sailors' hopes away,
Vain hopes, to reach their kindred on the shores!
Lo, the wild seas and surging waves
Gape hideous in a thousand graves:
Be still, ye floods, and know your bounds of sand,
Ye storms, adore your Master's hand :
The winds are in his fist, the waves at his com
STAND, and adore! how glorious He
That dwells in bright eternity!
and we confound our sight
Plung'd in th' abyss of dazzling light.
Thou sacred One, Almighty Three,
Great Everlasting Mystery,
What lofty numbers shall we frame
Equal to thy tremendous name?
Seraphs, the nearest to the throne,
Begin, and speak the Great Unknown:
Attempt the song, wind up your strings,
To notes untried and boundless things:
You, whose capacious powers survey
Largely beyond our eyes of clay :
Yet what a narrow portion too
Is seen, or known, or thought, by you!
How flat your highest praises fall
Below th' immense Original!
Weak creatures we, that strive in vain
To reach an uncreated strain !
Great God, forgive our feeble lays,
Sound out thine own eternal praise;
A song so vast, a theme so high,
Calls for the voice that tun'd the sky.
Those guardian drops my soul secure,
And wash away my sin;
Eternal Justice frowns no more,
And conscience smiles within.
Thus Sinai roars; and round the Earth
Thunder, and fire, and vengeance flings;
But, Jesus, thy dear gasping breath,
And Calvary, say gentler things: -
"Pardon, and grace, and boundless love,
Streaming along a Saviour's blood,
And life, and joys, and crowns above,
Dear-purchas'd by a bleeding God,"
Hark, how he prays (the charming sound
Dwells on his dying lips) "Forgive!"
And every groan, and gaping wound,
Cries, Father, let the rebels live."
Go, you that rest upon the law,
And toil, and seek salvation there;
Look to the flames that Moses saw,
And shrink, and tremble, and despair.
But I'll retire beneath the cross:
Saviour, at thy dear feet I lie;
And the keen sword that justice draws,
Flaming and red, shall pass me by.
"No more, my friends, shall I complain,
Though all my heart-strings ache;
Welcome disease, and every pain
That makes the cottage shake.
"Now let the tempest blow all round,
Now swell the surges high,
SEEKING A DIVINE CALM IN A RESTLESS And beat this house of bondage down,
To let the stranger fly.
O mens, quæ stabili fata regis vice, &c.
Casimire, Book III. Od. xxiii.
ETERNAL Mind, who rul'st the fates
Of dying realms and rising states
With one unchang'd decree;
While we admire thy vast affairs,
Say, can our little trifling cares
Afford a smile to thee?
"How weak's the prison where I dwell!
Flesh but a tottering wall,
The breaches cheerfully foretel,
The house must shortly fall.
"I have a mansion built above
By the Eternal Hand;
And should the Earth's old basis move,
My heavenly house must stand.
"Yes; for 'tis there my Saviour reigns,
(I long to see the God)
And his immortal strength sustains
The courts that cost him blood."
Hark, from on high my Saviour calls:
"I come, my Lord, my Love :"
Devotion breaks the prison-walls,
And speeds my last remove.
Ir was a brave attempt! adventurous he,
Who in the first ship broke the unknown sea a;
And, leaving his dear native shores behind,
Trusted his life to the licentious wiud.
I see the surging brine: the tempest raves:
He on a pine-plank rides across the waves,
Exulting on the edge of thousand gaping graves:
He steers the winged boat, and shifts the sails,
Conquers the flood, and manages the gales.
Such is the soul that leaves this mortal land
Fearless when the great Master gives command.
Death is the storm: she smiles to hear it roar,
And bids the tempest waft her from the shore:
Then with a skilful helin she sweeps the seas,
And manages the raging storm with ease;
(Her faith can govern Death) she spreads her wings
Wide to the wind, and as she sails she sings,
And loses by degrees the sight of mortal things.
As the shores lessen, so her joys arise,
The waves roll gentler, and the tempest dies;
Now vast eternity fills all her sight,
She floats on the broad deep with infinite delight,
The seas for ever calm, the skies for ever bright.
A PROSPECT OF THE RESURRECTION.
How long shall Death the tyrant reign
And triumph o'er the just,
While the rich blood of martyrs slain
Lies mingled with the dust?
When shall the tedious night be gone?
When will our Lord appear?
Our fond desires would pray him down,
Our love embrace him here.