The Excellency of the Holy Scriptures
Father of mercies, in thy word
What endless glory shines;
For ever be thy name ador’d
For these celestial lines.
Here, mines of heav’nly wealth disclose
Their bright, unbounded store :
The glitt’ring gem no longer glows,
And India boasts no more.
Here, may the wretched sons of want
Exhaustless riches find:
Riches, above what earth can grant,
And lasting as the mind.
Here, the fair tree of knowledge grows,
And yields a free repast;
Sublimer sweets than nature knows,
Invite the longing taste.
Here may the blind and hungry come,
And light, and food receive;
Here, shall the meanest guest have room,
And taste, and see, and live.
Amidst these gloomy wilds below,
When dark and sad we stray;
Here, beams of heav’n relieve our woe,
And guide to endless day.
Here, springs of consolation rise,
To cheer the fainting mind;
And thirsty souls receive supplies,
And sweet refreshment find.
When guilt and terror, pain and grief,
United rend the heart,
Here, sinners meet divine relief,
And cool the raging smart.
Here, the Redeemer’s welcome voice,
Spreads heav’nly peace around ;
And life, and everlasting joys
Attend the blissful sound.
But when his painful sufferings rise,
(Delightful, dreadful scene!)
Angels may read with wond’ring eyes,
That Jesus died for men.
O may these heav’nly pages be
My ever dear delight,
And still new beauties may I see,
And still increasing light.
Divine instructor, gracious Lord,
Be thou for ever near,
Teach me to love thy sacred word,
And view my Savior there.
Anne Steele [1717–1778], The Works Volume I, (Boston 1808), pgs 72–74