1 "The Master has come over Jordan,"
Said Hannah, the mother, one day,
"He is healing the people who throng Him,
With a touch of His finger, they say;
And now I shall carry the children—
Little Rachel, and Samuel, and John,
And dear little Esther, the baby,
For the Master to look upon."
2 The father then looked at her kindly,
And said, as he tenderly smiled,
"Now who but a fond loving mother
Would think of a project so wild?
If the children were tortured by demons,
Or dying with fever, ’twere well;
Or had they taint of the leper,
Like many around us who dwell."
3 "Nay, nay, do not hinder me, Nathan,
I feel such a burden of care;
And if to the Master I tell it,
That burden He’ll help me to bear;
If He but lays His hands on the children,
My heart will be lighter, I know,
For a blessing for ever and ever
Will follow them each as they go."
4 So, over the mountains of Judah,
Along with the vines all so green,
With Esther asleep on her bosom,
And Rachel her brothers between;
With the people who hung on His teaching,
Or waited His touch or His word;
Through the row of proud Pharisees hastening,
She pressed to the feet of the Lord.
5 "Now, why shouldst thou hinder the Master,"
Said Peter, "with children like these?
Thou knowest from morn until evening
He is teaching and healing disease."
Said Jesus: "Forbid not the children,
Permit them to come unto Me!"
Then He took in His arms little Esther,
And Rachel He sat on His knee.
6 The care-stricken heart of the mother
Was lifted all sorrow above;
His hands kindly laid on the children,
He blest them with holiest love;
And said of the babes on His bosom,
"Of such are the kingdom of Heaven."
Then the strength for all duty and trial,
That hour to her spirit was given.
Gill, Julia, is given in W. B. Bradbury's Golden Censer, 1864, as the authoress of "The Master has come over Jordan" (Children for Jesus), given in several collections, including the Sunday School Hymnary, 1905, and others.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)
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