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On a Day of Prayer for Success in War

Lord, how shall wretched sinners dare

Author: Anne Steele
Published in 32 hymnals

Representative Text

1 Lord, how shall wretched sinners dare
Look up to thy divine above?
Or offer their imperfect prayer
Before a just, a holy God?

2 Bright terrors guard thy awful seat,
And dazzling glories veil thy face;
Yet mercy calls us to thy feet,
Thy throne is still a throne of grace.

3 O may our souls thy grace adore
May Jesus plead our humble claim;
While thy protection we implore,
In his prevailing, glorious name.

4 With all the boasted pomp of war
In vain we dare the hostile field:
In vain, unless the Lord be there;
Thy arm alone is Britain's shield.

5 Let past experience of thy care
Support our hope, our trust invite!
Again attend our humble prayer!
Again be mercy thy delight!

6 Our arms succeed, our councils guide,
Let thy right hand our cause maintain;
'Till war's destructive rage subside,
And peace resume her gentle reign.

7 O when shall time the period bring,
When raging war shall waste no more;
When peace shall stretch her balmy wing
From Europe's coast, to India's shore.

8 When shall the gospel's healing ray
(Kind source of amity divine!)
Spread o'er the world celestial day?
When shall the nations, Lord, be thine?

Source: A Selection of Hymns: from the best authors, intended to be an appendix to Dr. Watt's psalms and hymns. (1st Am. ed.) #DXXVII

Author: Anne Steele

Anne Steele was the daughter of Particular Baptist preacher and timber merchant William Steele. She spent her entire life in Broughton, Hampshire, near the southern coast of England, and devoted much of her time to writing. Some accounts of her life portray her as a lonely, melancholy invalid, but a revival of research in the last decade indicates that she had been more active and social than what was previously thought. She was theologically conversant with Dissenting ministers and "found herself at the centre of a literary circle that included family members from various generations, as well as local literati." She chose a life of singleness to focus on her craft. Before Christmas in 1742, she declined a marriage proposal from contemporar… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Lord, how shall wretched sinners dare
Title: On a Day of Prayer for Success in War
Author: Anne Steele
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain


Lord, how shall wretched sinners dare. Anne Steele. [In Time of War.] Appeared in the 2nd edition of her Poems on Subjects chiefly Devotional, 1780, vol. iii. p. 123, in 8 stanzas of 4 lines, and headed, "On the day of Prayer for success in War." It is also in D. Sedgwick's reprint of Miss Steele's Hymns, 1863. In a few American hymnbooks, including the Presbyterian Selection of Hymns, Philadelphia, 1861, a cento from this is given as "Lord, may our souls Thy grace adore." It begins with stanza iii., somewhat altered.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



Instances (1 - 32 of 32)
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A Selection of Hymns from the Best Authors. #527

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A Selection of Hymns #DXXVII

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A Selection of Psalms and Hymns #210

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A Selection of Psalms and Hymns #CCX

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A Selection of Psalms and Hymns #210

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Baptist Hymn Book #a706

Chapel Hymns #d321

Church Melodies, a Collection of Psalms, Hymns and Spiritual Songs #d610

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Church Psalmody #H550

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Church Psalmody #550

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Evangelical Hymns #50

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Manual of Christian Psalmody #550

Melodies of the Church #d578


Miscellaneous Pieces in Verse and Prose #123

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Psalms and Hymns, Adapted to Public Worship #500

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Psalms and Hymns, for Christian Use and Worship #H166

Psalms in Metre and Hymns Selected for the Use of the Parish Church of Boston #d57

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The Baptist Hymn Book #706

The Christian Hymn Book #d374

The Christian Hymn Book. 7th ed. #d379

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The Christian Psalmist #265

The Halifax Selection of Hymns #d256

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The Psalms and Hymns of Dr. Watts #1245

The Psaltery #d150

The Thanksgiving #d127

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The Virginia Selection of Psalms and Hymns and Spiritual Songs #22

Virginia Selection of Psalms #d283

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