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Penitence

VI.
The Deliverer from Bondage.

7,7,7,7

O Durchbrecher aller Bande

Gottfried Arnold. 1697.

Thou Who breakest every chain,

Thou Who still art ever near,

Thou with Whom disgrace and pain

Turn to joy and heaven e'en here;

Let Thy further judgments fall

On the Adam strong within,

Till Thy grace hath freed us all

From the prison-house of sin.

141

'Tis Thy Father's will toward us,

Thou shouldst end Thy work at length;

Hence in Thee are centred thus

Perfect wisdom, love, and strength,

That Thou none shouldst lose of those

Whom He gave Thee, though they roam

'Wilder'd here amid their foes,

Thou shouldst bring them safely home.

Ah Thou wilt, Thou canst not cease,

Till Thy perfect work be done;

In Thy hands we lie at peace,

Knowing all Thy love hath won,

Though the world may blindly dream

We are captives poor and base,

And the cross's yoke may deem

Sign of meanness and disgrace.

Look upon our bonds, and see

How doth all creation groan

'Neath the yoke of vanity,

Make Thy full redemption known;

Still we wrestle, cry, and pray,

Held in bitter bondage fast,

Though the soul would break away

Into higher things at last.

Lord, we do not ask for rest

For the flesh, we only pray

Thou wouldst do as seems Thee best,

Ere yet comes our parting day;

142

But our spirit clings to Thee,

Will not, dare not, let Thee go,

Until Thou have set her free

From the bonds that cause her woe.

Conqueror conquer, Ruler reign,

King assert Thy sovereign right,

Till no slavery more remain

Spread the kingdom of Thy might!

Lead the captives freely out,

Through the covenant of Thy blood,

From our dark remorse and doubt,

For Thou willest but our good.

Ours the fault it is, we own,

We are slaves to self and sloth,

Yet oh leave us not alone

In the living death we loathe;

Crush'd beneath our burden's weight,

Crying at Thy feet we fall,

Point the path, though steep and strait,

Thou didst open once for all.

Ah how dearly were we bought

Not to serve the world or sin;

By the work that Thou hall wrought

Must Thou make us pure within,--

Wholly pure and free, in us

Be Thine image now restored:

Fill'd from out Thy fulness thus

Grace for grace is on us pour'd.

143

Draw us to Thy cross, O Love,

Crucify with Thee whate'er

Cannot dwell with Thee above,

Lead us to those regions fair!

Courage! long the time may seem,

Yet His day is coming fast;

We shall be like them that dream

When our freedom dawns at last.

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