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Hymn 97

John Newton


The blasted fig-tree.

Mk 11:20

One aweful word which JESUS spoke,

Against the tree which bore no fruit;

More piercing than the lightning’s stroke,

Blasted and dried it to the root.

But could a tree the LORD offend,

To make him show his anger thus?

He surely had a farther end,

To be a warning word to us.

The fig–tree by its leaves was known,

But having not a fig to show;

It brought a heavy sentence down,

“Let none hereafter on thee grow.”

Too many, who the gospel hear,

Whom Satan blinds and sin deceives;

We to this fig–tree may compare,

They yield no fruit, but only leaves.


Knowledge, and zeal, and gifts, and talk,

Unless combined with faith and love,

And witnessed by a gospel walk,

Will not a true profession prove.

Without the fruit the LORD expects

Knowledge will make our state the worse;.

The barren trees he still rejects,

And soon will blast them with his curse.

O LORD, unite our hearts in prayer!

On each of us thy Spirit send;

That we the fruits of grace may bear,

And find acceptance in the end.

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