From the Lesson. [1 Kings 18:21]
Was kinket ihr betrognen Seelen
trans. by Catherine Winkworth, 1855
Why halt thus, O deluded heart,
Why waver longer in thy choice?
Is it so hard to choose the part
Offered by Heaven's entreating voice?
Oh look with clearer eyes again,
Nor strive to enter in, in vain.
Remember, 'tis not Caesar's throne,
Nor earthly honour, wealth or might
Whereby God's favour shall be show
To him who conquers in the fight;
Himself and an eternity
Of bliss and rest he offers thee.
God crowneth no divided heart;
To Him oh hallow all thy life!
Who loveth Jesus but in part,
he works himself much pain and strife,
And gains what he deserveth well,
Here conflict, and hereafter hell.
Who wrestling long, with many a cry
Can bid farewell at last to all,
Yet ever loves the Lord most High,
Loves Him alone whate'er befall,
Is counted worthy of the crown,
And on a kingly throne set down.
Then break the rotten bonds away
That hinder you your race to run,
That make you linger oft and stay;
Oh be your course afresh begun!
Let no false rest your soul deceive,
Up! 'tis a Heaven ye must receive!
Omnipotence is on your side,
And Wisdom watches o'er your heads,
And God Himself will be your guide
So ye but follow where He leads;
How many guided by His hand,
Have reached ere now their father-land!
Nor let the body dull the soul,
Its weakness, fears, and sloth despise;
Man toils and roams from pole to pole
To gain some earthly fleeting prize,
The Highest Good he little cares
To win, or striving soon despairs.
Oh help each other, hasten on,
Behold the goal is nigh at hand;
The battle-field shall soon be won,
Your King shall soon before you stand!
To calmest rest He leads you now,
And sets His crown upon your brow.