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Universal Redemption

Father, whose hand on all bestows

Sufficiency of saving grace;

Whose universal love o’erflows

The whole of Adam’s fallen race;

Within no narrow bounds confined,

The vast, unfathomable sea

Swells, and embraces all mankind;—

For, O my God, it reach’d to me!

If I could hear Thy quickening call,

Then all may seek, and find Thee too;

Surely Thou loving art to all,

And I stand forth to prove it true.

Was there a man Thou doom’st to die,

How justly then might I despair!

For who so vile a wretch as I?

For who so bold his God to dare?

Was there a single soul decreed

Thy unrelenting hate to know,

Then I were he—and well might dread

The horrors of eternal woe.

But, O, in vain the tempter tries

To shake the Rock that ne’er shall move;

My steadfast soul His power defies,

Secure in this, that God is love.

Whoe’er admits; my soul disowns

The image of a torturing God,

Well-pleased with human shrieks and groans,

A fiend, a Molock gorged with blood!

Good God! that any child of Thine

So horribly should think of Thee!

Lo! all my hopes I here resign,

If all may not find grace with me.

If fury can in Thee have place,

Empty it on my helpless head;

Cut off, exclude me from Thy grace,

Unless for all the Saviour bled.

If all may not Thy mercy claim,

On me the vengeful bolt let fall;

Take back my interest in the Lamb,

Unless the Victim died for all.8585Nothing can more strongly mark the strength of the poet’s convictions; but his words were from the first considered by many as liable to just exception, and probably will be always so regarded by a portion of his readers. Allowance should, however, be made for the peculiarly difficult and painful circumstances under which he wrote. See the note prefixed to the “Hymns on God’s Everlasting Love.”

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