Obrazy na stronie

Complacency has breath'd a gentle gale
O'er all his thoughts, and swell's his easy said:
His books well trimm'd, and in the gayest styles
Like regimented coxcombs, rank and file,
Adorn his intellects as well as shelves,
And teach him notions splendid as themselves :
The Bible only stands neglected there
Though that of all most worthy of his cares
And, like an infant, troublesome awake,
Is left to sleep, for peace and quiet sake.

What shall the man deserve of human kind, Whose happy skill and industry, combin'd, Shall prove (what argument could never yet) The Bible an imposture and a cheat? The praises of the libertine, profess'd The worst of men, and curses of the best. Where should the living, weeping o'er his woes ; The dying, trembling at the awful close ; Where the betray'd, forsaken, and oppress'd, The thousands whom the world forbids to rest : Where should they find, (those comforts at an end The scripture yields) or hope to find, a friend?. Sorrow might muse herself to madness then ; And, seeking exile from the sight of men, Bury herself in solitude profound, Grow frantic with her pangs, and bite the ground, Thus often unbelief, grown sick of life, Flies to the tempting pool, or felon knife. The jury meet, the coroner is short, And lunacy the verdict of the court..

Reverse the sentence, let the truth be knowing
Such lunacy is ignorance alone.
They knew not, what some bishops may not know,
That scripture is the only cure of woe.
That field of promise, how it Alings abroad
Its odour o'er the Christian's thorny road !
The soul, reposing on assur'd relief,
Feels herself happy amidst all her grief,
Forgets her labour as she toils along;
Weeps tears of joy, and bursts into a song:

But the same word, that, like the polish'd share,
Ploughs.up the roots of a believer's care,
Kills, too, the flowery weeds, where'er they grow,
That bind the sinner's Bacchanalian brow.
O that unwelcome voice of heavenly love,
messenger of


from above !
How does it grate upon his thankless ear,
Crippling his pleasures with the cramp of fear !
His will and judgment at continual strife,
That civil war embitters all his life :
In vain he points his powers against the skies,
In vain he closes or averts his

eyes, Truth will intrude-she bids him yet

beware ; And shakes the sceptic in the scorner's chair.

Though various foes against the truth combine, Pride, above all, opposes her design ; Pride, of a growth superior to the rest,. The subtlest serpent with the loftiest cresty,

Swells at the thought, and, kindling into rage, Would hiss the cherub mercy from the stage.

And is the soul, indeed, so lost ?-she cries ; Fallen from her glory, and too weak to rise ? Torpid and dull, beneath a frozen zone, Has she no spark that may be deem'd her own ? Grant her indebted to what zealots call Grace undeserv'd-yet, surely, not for all ! Some beams of rectitude she yet displays, Some love of virtue, and some power to praise ; Can lift herself above corporeal things, And, soaring on her own unborrowed wings, Possess herself of all that's good or true, Assert the skies, and vindicate her due. Past indiscretion is a venial crime ; And, if the youth, unmellow'd yet by time, Bore on his branch, luxuriant then and rude, Fruits of a blighted size, austere and crude, Maturer years shall happier stores produce, And meliorate the well concocted juice. Then, conscious of her meritorious zeal, To justice she may make her bold appeal ; And leave to mercy, with a tranquil mind, The worthless and unfruitful of mankind. Hear, then, how mercy, slighted and defied, Retorts th'affront against the crown of pride,

Perish the virtue, as it ought, abhorr'd, And the fool with it, who insults his Lord.

Th’atonement a Redeemer's love has wrought
Is not for you—the righteous need it not.
Seest ihou yon harlot, wooing all she meets,
The worn-out nuisance of the public streets ;
Herself, from morn to night, from night to morny
Her own abhorrence, and as much your scorn!
The gracious shower, unlimited and free,
Shall fall on her, when Heaven denies it thee.
Of all that wisdom dictates, this the drift-
That man is dead in sin, and life a gift.

Is virtue, then, unless of christian growth, Mere fallacy, or foolishness, or both? Ten thousand sages lost in endless woe, For ignorance of what they could not know ! That speech betrays at once a bigot's tongueCharge not a God with such outrageous wrong! Truly, not I-the partial light men have, My creed persuades me, well employed, may save ; While he that scorns the noon-day beam, perverse, Shall find the blessing, unimprov'd, a curse. Let heathen worthies, whose exalted mind Left sensuality and dross behind, Possess, for me, their undisputed lot, And take, unenvied, the reward they sought. But still, in virtue of a Saviour's plea, Not blind by choice, bat destin'd not to see. Their fortitude and wisdom were a flame Celestial, though they knew not whence it came, Deriv'd from the same source of light and grace That guides the christian in his swifter race.

Their judge was conscience, and her rule their law :
That rule, pursued with reverence and with awe,
Led them, however faltering, faint and slow,
From what they knew to what they wish'd to know.
But let not him, that shares a brighter day,
Traduce the splendour of a noon-tide ray,
Prefer the twilight of a darker time,
And deem bis base stupidity no crime ;
The wretch, who slights the bounty of the skies,
And sinks, while favour'd with the means to rise,
Shall find them rated at their full amount,
The good he scorn'd all carried to account.

Marshalling all his terrors as he came ;
Thunder, and earthquake, and devouring flame ;
From Sinai's top Jehovah gave the law-
Life for obedience-death for every flaw.
When the great Sovereign would his will express,
He gives a perfect rule ; what can he less ?
And guards it with a sanction as severe
As vengeance can infict, or sinners fear :
Else his own glorious rights he would disclaim,
And man might safely trifle with his name.
He bids him glow with unremitting love
To all on earth, and to himself above ;
Condemns th' injurious deed, the slanderous tongue,
The thought that meditates a brother's wrorg :
Brings not alone the more conspicuous part-
His conduct—to the test, but tries his heart.

Hark! universal nature shook and groan'd, "Twas the last trumpet-see the Judge enthron'd:

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