That man is blest who stands in awe
Of God, and loves his sacred law:
His seed on earth shall be renowned;
His house the seat of wealth shall be,
An inexhausted treasury,
And with successive honors crowned.
His lib'ral favors he extends,
To some he gives, to others lends;
A gen'rous pity fills his mind:
Yet what his charity impairs,
He saves by prudence in affairs
And thus he's just to all mankind.
His hands, while they his alms bestowed,
His glory's future harvest sowed;
The sweet remembrance of the just,
Like a green root, revives and bears
A train of blessings for his heirs,
When dying nature sleeps in dust.
Beset with threat'ning dangers round,
Unmoved shall he maintain his ground;
His conscience holds his courage up:
The soul that's filled with virtue's light,
Shines brightest in affliction's night,
And sees in darkness beams of hope.
[Ill tidings never can surprise
His heart that fixed on God relies,
Though waves and tempests roar around:
Safe on the rock he sits, and sees
The shipwreck of his enemies,
And all their hope and glory drowned.
The wicked shall his triumph see,
And gnash their teeth in agony,
To find their expectations crossed;
They and their envy, pride, and spite,
Sink down to everlasting night,
And all their names in darkness lost.]
Isaac Watts was the son of a schoolmaster, and was born in Southampton, July 17, 1674. He is said to have shown remarkable precocity in childhood, beginning the study of Latin, in his fourth year, and writing respectable verses at the age of seven. At the age of sixteen, he went to London to study in the Academy of the Rev. Thomas Rowe, an Independent minister. In 1698, he became assistant minister of the Independent Church, Berry St., London. In 1702, he became pastor. In 1712, he accepted an invitation to visit Sir Thomas Abney, at his residence of Abney Park, and at Sir Thomas' pressing request, made it his home for the remainder of his life. It was a residence most favourable for his health, and for the prosecution of his literary… Go to person page >