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Hymn 91

John Newton


The spider and bee.


On the same flow’r we often see

The loathsome spider and the bee;

But what they get by working there,

Is different as their natures are.

The bee a sweet reward obtains,

And honey well repays his pains;

Home to the hive he bears the store,

And then returns in quest of more.

But no sweet flow’rs that grace the field,

Can honey to the spider yield;

A cobweb all that he can spin,

And poison all he stores within.

Thus in that sacred field the word,

With flow’rs of GOD’S own planting stored,

Like bees his children feed and thrive,

And bring home honey to the hive.

There, spider–like, the wicked come,

And seem to taste the same perfume,

But the vile venom of their hearts,

To poison all their food converts.

From the same truths believers prize.

They weave vain refuges of lies;

And from the promise licence draw,

To trifle with the holy law!

LORD, shall thy word of life and love,

The means of death to numbers prove!

Unless thy grace our hearts renew, 2929See also Book 3, Hymn 71

We sink to hell, with heav’n in view.

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