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XVIII. O Sov'reign Lord, whom my support I prove

1 O Sov'reign Lord, whom my support I prove,
Be thou the constant object of my love.
2 My rock of safety thou, my strong defence,
The God, the guardian of my innocence,
My hope, my solace, in my sore distress,
My shield, my buckler, when my foes oppress.
3 Thee I'll invoke; for worthy thou of praise,
Thou in her griefs my drooping soul didst raise;
4 Hemm'd in with dangers, in distress I lay,
Death with his direful snares beset my way;
Down to the dreary shades, the fields below,
Caught in his fatal toils, I fear'd to go;
6 When to my God in confidence I pray'd,
Preferr'd my sad complaint, implor'd his aid.
7 Nor were my sad complaints in vain preferr'd;
Soon on his awful throne my voice he heard;
Lo! trembles earth at the vindictive God;
Th' affrighted hills from their foundations nod;
8 From his dread nostrils clouds of smoke arise;
From out his mouth a fire cosduming flies;
9 He bows the Heav'ns; he leaves his awful seat;
He comes; thick misty vapours cloath his feet:
10 "On flaming Cherubs royally he rode;
"On wings of winds came flying all abroad;"
11 Tremendous darkness his dread presence shrouds;
Surround him waters, and involve him clouds:
12 From his bright eyes burst forth a radiant light,
That drives the darkness, and dispels the night;
Then falls of rattling hail a dreadful show'r,
And flakes of fire their glaring volumes pour.
13 But when the Lord his awful silence broke;
High heav'n with all it's deep artillery shook;
Earth was astonish'd at the pouring flood,
And with his rapid lightnings aether glow'd.
14 Thro' the vast void his flaming arrows fly,
And flash on flash redoubles, to destroy:
15 The gaping Earth her secret sources shews,
Whence springs the fountain, when the riv'let flows;
And, so great terror at his wrath me feels,
Trembling, her own foundations me reveals.
16 He from above reach'd forth his aiding hand;
Me, sinking in the waters, he sustain'd;
17 Repuls'd the madness of my mighty foes,
Their wiles eluded, and dispers'd my woes;
18 And, when with all their malice they assail'd
Vain were their schemes--I in my God prevail'd.
19 Me did he reinstate in liberty,
And, 'cause he lov'd his servant, set him free.
20 For well my honest humble heart he knew,
And deem'd the favours he bestcow'd, my due:
21 That in his righteous ways I constant trod,
Nor with the wicked wou'd forsake my God;
22 His statutes long with reverence obey'd,
And never from his dread behests had stray'd;
23 Had kept my soul from fraud, from falsnood free,
Had loath'd the paths of guilt, of infamy:
24 Therefore my life with justice he regards,
And with a bounteous hand my truth rewards;
Therefore his favour and his love he shew'd,
And blessings nameless, numberless, bestow'd.
25 For who with thee conforms in heart and mind,
Thee with the holy shall they holy find,
That to the perfect thou wilt perfect be,
26 And the just man shall justice have from thee:
But that the froward souls, who wilful deal
In wily schemes, shall thy resentment feel.
27 For, when in misery the humble grieve,
Thy pow'rful hand is ready to relieve,
And, when with haughty scorn the wicked glow,
Thou'lt check their high disdain, and bring them low
28 Me in adversity thou'st oft sustain'd,
My lamp hast lighted, when the darkness reign'd.
29 My leader thou, tho' armed hosts assail,
I'll break thro' all, and in thy pow'r prevail:
Sure of Success, on their full ranks I'll fall,
And scale the highest turret of the wall.
30 For, when the righteous, in thy cause unite,
Thy word is promis'd to defend the right;
Thy word, far purer than the purest gold,
Close, as a buckler, to my breast I'll hold;
With firmest hope I'll on thy word rely,
Spring on the foe, and snatch the victory:
31 For who is Lord, or who is God, but thee?
Who else has pow'r, has might, has majesty?
32 Thou giv'st me strength against the foe, O God;
To heav'nly wisdom pointest out the road;
33 Thou giv'st me, swifter than the hart to fly,
And far from danger placest me on high:
34 Instruct'st my hand, the use of arms to know,
To dart the jav'lin, and to wield the bow.
35 My rock of safety thou, my pow'rful might;
Thy strong right-hand protects me in the fight;
36 Thou clear'st my road thro' the impervious way;
My tott'ring Feet, where snares entrap, dost stay;
37 Dost to my soul true fortitude impart;
Soon feel my fainting foes the deadly dart;
38 Soon at my feet my mercy they implore,
Sink with their wounds, and fall, to rise no more.
39 Thro' all my limbs new strength dost thou infuse;
My ardent soul the gen'rous chace pursues;
40 I'm all on fire; my foes I soon destroy;
Dismay'd, dejected, from my arms they fly;
41 They call for succour, but no succour's near;
To thee they call, hut thou disdain'st to hear;
42 Swift, I pursue, and follow close behind;
Swift they disperse, like dust before the wind;
And, like the filthy rubbish of the street,
I spurn their bodies with triumphant feet.
43 Thus from their hostile rage thou set'st me free,
And crown'st me with imperial dignity;
E'en o'er the heathen giv'st unbounded sway,
And bidst the distant realms my rule obey;
44 The distant realms submissive own my right,
45 Distrust their castles, and decline the fight.
46 Praise, might and majesty to thee, O Lord;
Thou didst thy pow'rful help to me afford;
47 Didst 'gainst my foes my injur'd cause maintain,
And gav'st me o'er thy favour'd tribes to reign;
48 Thou bidst the tumults of the wicked cease,
Distract'st their counsels, and commandest peace;
49 Therefore amid the nations I'll proclaim,
In songs of gratitude, thy glorious name;
50 For to thy chosen, thy anointed king
Didst thou, in his dismay, deliv'rance bring,
Hast crown'd his days with glory and success,
And still his latest progeny wilt bless.

Text Information
First Line: O Sov'reign Lord, whom my support I prove
Author: Thomas Cradock
Language: English
Publication Date: 1756
Tune Information
(No tune information)

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