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Thrice happy they who with religious awe

Thrice happy they who with religious awe

Author: Thomas Cradock
Published in 1 hymnal

Full Text

ALEPH:
1 Thrice happy they, who with religious awe,
With purest hearts, observe God's sacred law!
2 The way their maker teaches, who pursue,
And to the dictates of his word are true!
3 Such will from ev'ry heinous crime be clear;
They keep the statutes of their God in fear.
4 For 'tis his will, that strictly we obey
His blest commands, and never from them stray.
5 O that my ways were order'd so aright,
That I might shew therein my high delight!
6 If from thy precepts I forbore to part,
No shame wou'd seize my soul, no grief my heart;
7 Thy judgments when I 'ad learn'd, with conscience gay
Thy righteous justice gladly I'd display:
8 Yes, Lord, thy law my constant rule I'd make;
--O not thy servant utterly forsake.
BETH:
9 How shall a young man well his conduct guide?
--When heav'ns high laws o'er all his steps preside.
10 So have I ever found--still, gracious God,
Still let me keep the same unerring road.
11 Thy word my constant inmate, Lord, hath been
To guard me from the fatal lures of sin.
12 Most worthy thou of praise--preserve me still
In due obedience to thy sacred will:
13 That on thy law I yet may meditate;
That yet my tongue thy judgments may relate.
14 Not wealth, not honours, such true pleasure give
As from my firm obedience I receive.
15 Therefore thy precepts fill my inmost thought,
My soul to rev'rence them is daily taught;
16 Thy laws to me sincereft joy afford,
And I'11 ne'er slight the dictates of thy word,
GIMEL:
17 To me the blessmgs of thy grace impart,
That still thy statutes may direct my heart;
18 With thy effectual light illume my mind,
That she the wonders of thy law may find;
19 On earth but as a sojourner I dwell;
Thou not thy precepts from my soul conceal.
20 My soul that sickens with desire to know
The sacred laws that from thy wisdom flow.
21 O thou, that, when the wicked wilful err,
Rebuk'st their pride, and strik'st their hearts with fear,
22 Since faithful to thy dread commands I prove,
From me contempt and calumny remove.
23 The great ones of the earth against me speak,
'Cause I thy statutes resolutely seek;
24 Their obloquy I scorn--thy statutes still
Shall guide my heart, and regulate my will.
DSLETH:
25 Droops my sad soul; she languishes in grief;
Do thou, as thou hast promis'd, grant relief;
26 The secrets of my heart I've not conceal'd,
But ev'ry error of my life reveal'd.
27 O let me then thy precepts understand;
And sing the wonders of thy mighty hand.
28 With pain, with anguish, melts my soul away;
But thou thy mercy in her cure display.
29 Let me, my lips from falshood to refrain,
A perfect knowledge in thy precepts gain.
30 The ways of truth, of justice, I have chose,
And thy blest judgments as my rule propose;
31 Thy law the pleasure of my life I've made,
Let not reproach my guileless soul upbraid;
32 If thou my heart from all her cares wilt free,
I'll ever tread the path prescrib'd by thee.
HE:
33 Give me, the way of thy commands to know;
The salutary road unto me shew;
Them to observe, my utmost soul I'll bend,
And keep the road till life itself shall end.
35 Yes; in thy statutes is my high delight;
O guide me, lead me, that I walk aright.
36 Deaf may I prove to avarice's call,
And never in the snares of folly fall;
But to thy precepts thou my heart incline;
And still support me with thy pow'r divine.
38 Thy servant firmly on thy word relies,
He owns, thy judgments all are good, are wise;
Long let him prove thy providential care,
Nor the vile calumnies of scoffers bear.
40 Thy law, thy precepts, will he constant love,
May he thy favour and thy mercy prove.
VAU:
41 Be mindful of thy covenant, O Lord;
Support my soul, as promises thy word;
42 That, when the wicked with their taunts assail,
I may 'gainst their opprobrious wrongs prevail.
43 Truth let me ever speak, and scorn a lie;
For to thy justice for defence I fly.
44 So, long as breath inspires this vital clay,
Thy law shall I effectually obey;
45 So, in the paths of safety I shall tread,
Still live in peace, and no misfortunes dread:
46 Thy law, thy statutes, fearless, I'll aver;
Thy law e'en sceptre'd kings from me shall hear;
47 Obedience to thy law my sole employ,
Thy law I'll make my only, constant joy:
48 Thy law I've ever lov'd, and still will love,
And nought on earth my fix'd resolve shall move.
ZAIN:
49 Remember, Lord, the promise thou hast made;
'Tis on that promise I rely for aid;
50 My consolation this in deep distress;
Thy word consoles me, when my foes oppress.
51 For, when the proud with base derision wound,
Blest comfort in thy love I've ever found.
52 Of old thy judgments I have ne'er forgot;
And they have chear'd my soul, and eas'd my thought:
53 And, tho' with horror I the wicked view,
And grieve to see the measures they pursue;
54 Yet in this vale of mis'ry while I stay,
Thy law shall be the subject of my lay.
55 At night sweet solace in thy law I find,
E'en in the gloom thy name relieves my mind;
56 Or night or day 'tis my continued care,
Thy name to sing, thy statutes to declare.
CHETH:
57 My portion thou, my hope, my wealth, my alb,
I'll keep thy statutes, on thy name I'll call:
58 With fervent zeal thy favour I'll intreat,
That thou thy promis'd mercy ne'er forget.
59 When on the conduct of my life I thought,
My soul to rev'rence thy commands, I brought;
60 With steady feet, without the least delay,
Thy sacred will I hasten'd to obey.
61 The wicked pillage my domains, yet ne'er
Thy law will I forsake thro' servile fear.
62 To nobler heights I'll still my duty raise,
And rise at midnight thy blest name to praise;
63 And they alone shall my associates prove,
Who keep thy precepts, and thy law who love.
64 Thou, who to man dost all his blessings give,
Grant that in this resolve I constant live.
TETH:
65 Firm to thy word, good God, with joy, with peace,
Beneficent, thy servant dost thou bless.
66 O still, since thy commandments I believe,
A solid judgment and true knowledge give.
67 Before I was distrest, I went astray;
But now I've steadily pursued my way.
68 Thou'rt ever good--beneficence is thine--
Direct me in the road to joys divine.
69 'Gainst me the villain-proud their slanders raise;
But thee I'll faithful seek, and fervent praise.
70 While my delight is in thy law and thee,
Their hearts are blinded with prosperity.
71 Well was it then, that I distress have known;
Else I with them the fatal road had gone.
72 Thy law, thy statutes, to my soul appear,
More precious far, than all the world holds dear.
JOD:
73 My frame, O God, created by thy hand,
Grant me, thy perfect law to understand;
74 My great protection thou, with heart sincere
They'll joy to fee me, who thy word revere.
75 I know, O God, how just thy judgments are;
And that I justly thy inflictions bear.
76 But now thy faithful promise call to mind,
And let me solace in thy mercy find.
77 Yes; since thy statutes make my sole employ,
Let me thy blest beneficence enjoy;
78 While perish they, who with a causeless hate
Pursue my soul, and to destroy me, wait;
79 While those, who fear thee, and obey thy laws,
In friendship join me, and assist my cause;
80 While firm my feet the paths of duty trace,
And dire confusion never shrouds my face.
CAPH:
81 For thy salvation faints my soul; yet still
I hope, and in that hope sweet solace feel:
82 Deny their wonted aid my languid eyes;
Yet on thy word thy servant still relies:
83 In expectation wastes my strength away;
And yet I never from thy statutes stray.
84. How long must I this bitter anguish know?
When falls thy fearful vengeance on the foe?
85 For me the proud, who thy commands blaspheme,
Dig deep the pit, and 'gainst thy servant scheme.
86 Just are thy precepts, and thyself art just;
Therefore in thee 'gainst all their wiles I trust.
87 Me to the grave their wiles had well nigh brought;
Thy law directed still my ev'ry thought.
88 O let thy mercy then my soul revive;
So I thy law shall constant keep and live.
LAMED:
89 For ever firm, O God, thy word remains;
Firm as the heav'ns what once thy will ordains;
90 Thy faithfulness for ever is the same;
And lafss as long as earth's establish'd frame:
91 What thou hast once determin'd ever stands,
For all things hear and wait thy high commands.
92 Unless thy statutes my delight had been,
This blest, this happy day, I 'ad never seen.
93 To them I owe my present prosp'rous state;
Therefore thy statutes never I'll forget.
94 Thine am I, gracious God;--thy servant save--
A strict regard to thy commands I have.
95 The wicked long have waited to destroy,
But still thy law shall all my hours employ:
96 Thy law shall to eternity have pow'r,
When earth, when time, when death itself's no more.
MEM:
97 How does thy law my soul's affections sway,
Thy law, my meditation all the day?
98 Thy blest commands, that constant with me dwell,
Make me, that I mine enemies excel:
99 My mind by them illumin'd, high I soar,
'Bove those, who were my teachers heretofore.
100 Thro' them more wonders can I now descry
Than all the sages of antiquity.
101 Thro' them the paths to evil I've eschew'd;
Thro' them the road to happiness pursued:
102 My great instructor thou, the road I trod,
And ne'er forsook the statutes of my God.
103 O how they furnish me a sweet repast,
Sweeter than purest honey to the taste!
104 By them the paths to error I decline;
By them celestial wisdom now is mine.
NUN:
105 Thy word directs me, that I never stray,
A lamp to guide me in the perfect way.
106 I've sworn (and what I've sworn, I will observe)
That from thy judgments I will never swerve.
107 Afflicted heavily, to thee I cry;
O, mindful of thy word, swift aid supply.
108 The free-will off'ring of my mouth accept,
And in thy statutes thou my soul direct.
109 My soul unnumber'd perils still surround;
But on thy mercy all my hopes I found.
110 For me my impious foes have laid the snare;
Yet from thy precepts I will scorn to err.
111 Them, as my sole inheritance, I take;
Them, I my sole delight, my solace make.
112 Long as I live, my resolution this;
Thy law t' observe, to never act amiss.
SAMECH:
113 Vain-glorious thoughts my strongest hatred move;
And only on thy law I fix my love.
114 My shield art thou, my sure, my strong defence,
Thy word, the guardian of my innocence.
115 From me depart; avaunt, ye impious croud;
For I will keep the statutes of my God.
116 And thou, my God, be still my powerful friend,
Nor let distracting shame my hopes attend.
117 The anchor of my hopes I'll not reject,
Secure I stand, if thou my soul protect.
118 Destroy'd are all, thy statutes that desert,
Their works are falshoods all; the tricks of art:
119 Like dross, the impious dost thou sweep away;
Soon are they gone; soon finishes their day.
120 Nay too, my trembling system quakes for fear;
Lest I the terrors of thy justice bear.
AIN:
121 In justice I've endeavour'd to excel;
'Gainst me let not th' oppressor's schemes prevail.
122 With thy beneficence thy servant aid,
Lest foes insulting shou'd my peace invade.
123 Dim are my eyes with waiting for the hour,
Wherein thou wilt exert thy healing pow'r.
124 I plead thy mercy--let thy mercy sway;
I only ask thy precepts to obey.
125 Myself thy servant humbly I confess;
My prostrate soul with heavenly wisdom bless.
126 'Tis time, O Lord, that thou assert thy cause;
For lo! the wicked have made void thy laws:
127 While I of nobler price thy precepts deem,
Than all the glitter grovelling souls esteem:
128 Thy law I rev'rence, and thy name adore,
And a;l false ways I utterly abhor.
PE:
129 Thy laws are wonderful, beyond compare;
'Tis therefore they're the objects of my care.
130 His mind's enlighten'd, who thy word receives;
Thy word blest knowledge to the simple gives.
131 Thy pow'rful word so much my soul desir'd;
My breath heav'd short, and almost I expir'd.
132 All-gracious, view me with that eye benign,
With which thou wontest on the just to shine.
133 Me in my conduct by thy word sustain,
That no base passion o'er my soul may reign.
So shall I keep thy law, and reverence thee.
135 On me the glories of thy face display,
And teach me to walk steady in thy way.
136 Incessant streams flow from my weeping eyes,
'Cause poor mistaken men thy law despise.
TSADE:
137 Impartial justice, Lord, directs thy pow'r,
Justice divine the wicked shall deplore:
138 And all the laws thou'st given us to observe
Teach us, that thou wilt ne'er from justice swerve.
139 What anguish pains my soul, because my foes
Forget thy word, and thy commands oppose?
140 Yet purer still thy word than purewt gold;
Close to my heart thy word I therefore hold.
141 Poor tho' I am, tho' had in vilest scorn,
Yet from thy precepts I'll disdain to turn.
142 With killing griefs I struggle day and night;
Still in thy law I find sincere delight.
143 Thy sacred law shall time assault in vain;
When time's no more, thy justice shall remain;
144 Thy justice to eternity shall live--
The pow'r to know thy will, dread father, give.
KOPH:
145 With faithful heart to thee, O God, I pray;
That I may never from thy statutes stray.
146 Me with thy gracious mercy still protect;
And ne'er shall I thy sacred law reject.
147 E'er dawns the day, is this my constant pray'r,
And this my hope I faithfully declare:
148 When glooms the night, I thus thy pow'r intreat,
And, wakeful, on thy law I meditate.
149 My voice, all-gracious God, benignly hear;
Give me, my life to govern by thy fear.
150 The impious croud that not on thee rely,
That sport with mischief, draw alas! too nigh:
161 But nearer thou; on thee will I depend;
Truth, equity, and judgment, thee attend.
152 Thy holy law, O God, I've known of old,
Thy law that lasts, till time's last hour is told.
RESH:
153 My griefs consider, and thy servant free;
Thy law I've not forgot; but trust in thee.
154 Plead thou my cause; in safety bid me live;
And, as thou'st promis'd long, my soul revive,
155 Salvation to the wicked thou'lt deny;
Thy law they scorn, nor on thy pow'r rely,
156 O let me long in peace enjoy the day;
Thy mercies, Lord, no numbers can display.
157 Many are they, that 'gainst my life combine;
Yet ne'er from thy commandments I decline.
158 I view'd the vile transgressors with regret,
'Cause thy dread statutes they wou'd still reject,
159 O thou consider, how thy law I love,
And to my faithful soul benignant prove,
160 True from the first thy word has ever been;
True to eternal ages shall remain.
SCHIN:
161 With causeless hate proud tyrants have opprest;
But on thy word my soul shall ever rest.
162 Thy word to me more solid joy does yield,
Than e'en the richest plunder of the field.
163 Odious unto my soul base liars prove,
But thy blest law with ardency I love.
164 Seven times a day to thee my voice I raise;
Seven times a day I celebrate thy praise.
165 What joys on all that love thy statutes, wait?
No heavy cares disturb their happy state.
166 For thy salvation long I've waited, Lord,
And therefore was I govern'd by thy word:
167 Observant of thy law I've constant prov'd;
Thy sacred precepts I've sincerely lov'd;
168 Obedience to thy will I've ever shewn--
But thou my soul's most secret thoughts hast known.
TAU:
169 O hear me, gracious, when I thee address;
My soul, O God, with heav'nly wisdom bless.
170 Let my complaint pervade thy pitying ear;
With mercy, Lord, as thou hast promis'd, hear.
171 Then, when thou'st made me perfect in thy ways,
My glowing lips shall utter all thy praise;
172 My tongue the mysteries of thy word shall sing,
For all thy laws from truth, from justice, spring.
173 On thy right hand secure let me repose,
For I thy precepts for my guides have chose.
174 To me thy laws sincerest joy afford,
And long I've waited thy salvation, Lord.
175 Still grant me life, that I thy praise may tell,
And in obedience of thy precepts dwell.
176 Seek me, O God, as seeks the swain his stray,
And never more I'll wander from my way.



Source: New Version of the Psalms of David #CXIX

Author: Thomas Cradock

Rector of St. Thomas's, Baltimore County, Maryland Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Thrice happy they who with religious awe
Author: Thomas Cradock
Language: English
Publication Date: 1756
Copyright: This text in in the public domain in the United States because it was published before 1923.



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