Page images
PDF
EPUB

SEXAGESIMA SUNDAY.

So he drove out the man, and placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims and a flaming sword, which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life. Gen. iii. 24. Compare c. vi.

FOE of mankind ! too bold thy race :

Thou runn'st at such a reckless pace,
Thine own dire work thou surely wilt confound :

'Twas but one little drop of sin

We saw this morning enter in,
And lo! at eventide the world is drown'd.

See here the fruit of wandering eyes,

Of worldly longings to be wise,
Of Passion dwelling on forbidden sweets:

Ye lawless glances, freely rove;

Ruin below and wrath above
Are all that now the wildering fancy meets.

Lord, when in some deep garden glade,

Of Thee and of myself afraid, From thoughts like these among the bowers I hide,

Nearest and loudest then of all

I seem to hear the Judge's call:6 Where art thou, fallen man? come forth, and be

66 thou tried.”

Trembling before Thee as I stand,

Where'er I gaze on either hand
The sentence is gone forth, the ground is curs’d:

Yet mingled with the penal shower

Some drops of balm in every bower Steal down like April dews, that softest fall and first.

If filial and maternal lovek

Memorial of our guilt must prove, If sinful babes in sorrow must be born,

Yet, to assuage her sharpest throes,

The faithful mother surely knows,
This

the
way

Thou cam'st to save the world forlorn.

was

k In sorrow shalt thou bring forth children.

If blessed wedlock may not bless!

Without some tinge of bitterness To dash her cup of joy, since Eden lost,

Chaining to earth with strong desire

Hearts that would highest else aspire, And o'er the tenderer sex usurping ever most ;

Yet by the light of Christian lore

'Tis blind Idolatry no more, But a sweet help and pattern of true love,

Shewing how best the soul may cling

To her immortal Spouse and King, How He should rule, and she with full desire approve.

If niggard Earth her treasures hide",

To all but labouring hands denied, Lavish of thorns and worthless weeds alone,

The doom is half in mercy given

To train us in our way to Heaven, And shew our lagging souls how glory must be won.

1 Thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. m Cursed is the ground for thy sake.

If on the sinner's outward frame"

God hath impress'd his mark of blame, And even our bodies shrink at touch of light,

Yet mercy hath not left us bare:

The very weeds we daily wearo Are to Faith's eye a pledge of God's forgiving might.

And oh! if yet one arrow more!,

The sharpest of th’ Almighty's store, Tremble upon the string—a sinner's death

Art Thou not by to soothe and save,

To lay us gently in the grave, To close the weary eye and hush the parting breath ?

Therefore in sight of man bereft

The happy garden still was left,
The fiery sword that guarded shew'd it too,

Turning all ways, the world to teach,

That though as yet beyond our reach,
Still in its place the tree of life and glory grew.

n I was afraid because I was naked. o The Lord God made coats of skins, and he clothed them. p Thou shalt surely die.

QUINQUAGESIMA SUNDAY.

I do set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. Gen, ix. 13.

SWEET Dove! the softest, steadiest plume

In all the sunbright sky, Brightening in ever-changeful bloom

As breezes change on high ;

66

Sweet Leaf! the pledge of peace and mirth,

Long sought, and lately won,” Bless'd increase of reviving Earth,

When first it felt the Sun ;

Sweet Rainbow! pride of summer days,

High set at Heaven's command, Though into drear and dusky haze

Thou melt on either hand ;

« PreviousContinue »