BOOK I.. ..ON SELECT TEXTS
BOOK II. ...ON OCCASIONAL
BOOK Hi. ...ON THE PRO
GRESS AND CHANGES
OF THE SPIRITUAL
BY THE REV. JOHN NEWTON,
•Cantiditis, Arcades, inquitf •
Alontitnis kcec vestris : soli cantare periti ', ". - ' ', '. ,*
Arcades. O niilii turn quani inolliter ossa quiescant' !-"''*' ■
Vestra vieos olim si fistula dicat ainores !
VinGiL. Ed. X. 31.
And they snng as it T:ere a nevj sojig' before the throne : and no vian
could learn that song, but the redeemed froin the earth.
Rev. xiv. 3,
Ao sorro%\iful—yet akvajss rejcicirg. 2 Cor, vi. 10.
PUBLISHED BY EVERT DUYCKINCK,
NO. 110, PEARL-STREET.
M*Farlane and Long, printers.
COPIES of a few of these Hymns have already appeajcd in peri-
odical publications, and in some recent collections. I have ob-
served one or two of them attributed to persons who certainly had no
concern in them, but as transcribers. All that have been at differ-
ent times parted with in manuscript, are included in the present
volume ; and (if the information were of any great importance) the
public may be assured that the whole number were composed by
two persons only. The original design would not admit of any other
association. It was likewise intended as a monument, to perpe-
tuate the rememlirance of an intimate and endeared friendship. —
With this pleasing view I entered upon my part, which would have
been smaller than it is, and the book would have appeared much
sooner, and in a very different form, if the wise, though mysterious
providence of God, had not seen fit to cross niy wishes. We had not
proceeded far upon oiu* proposexi plan, before my dear friend was
prevented, by a long and affecting disposition, from affording me any
farther assistance. My grief and disappointment were greaj. 1 hung
my harp upon the willows, and for some time thought myself deter-
mined to proceed no farther without him. Yet my mind was after-
wards led to resume the service. My progress in it, amidst a variety
of other engagements, has been slow; yet in the course of years, the
hymns amounted to a considerable number : and my deference to
the judgment and desires of others, has at length overcome the re-
luctance I long felt to see them in print, while 1 had so few of my
iViend's hymns to insert in the collection. Tho' it is possible a good
judge of composition miglit be able to distinguish those which are his^
I have thought it proper to preclude a misapplication, by prefixing
the letter (c) to eacii of them. For the rest 1 must be responsible.
There is a style and manner suited to the composition of hymns,
which maybe more successfully, or at least more easily attained by
a versifier, than by a poet. They should be Hymnsy not Odes, if de-
signed for public worship, and for the use of plain people. Perspi-
cuity, simplicity, and ease should be chiefly attended to : and the
imagery and colouring of poetry, if admitted at all, should be in-
dulged very sparingly, and with great judgment. The late Dr. Watts,
many of whose hymns are admirable patterns in this species of writ-
ing, might as a poet have a right to say, that it cost him some labour
to restrain his fire, and to accommodate himself to the capacities of
common readers But it would not become me to make such a de-
claratioii. It behoved me to do my best. But though I would not of-
fend readers of taste by a wilful coarseness and negligence, I do not
v/rite professedly for them. If the Lord, whom I serve, has been
pleased to favoui' me with that mediocrity of talent, which may qua-
lify me for usefulness to the weak and poor of his flock, without quite
disgusting persons of superior discernment, I am satisfied.
As the workings of the heart of man, and of the Spirit of God, are
in general the same, in all v/iio are the subjects of grace, I hope most
of these hymns, beingthe fruit and expression of my own experience,
"will coincide with the views of real Christians of all denominations.
But I cannot expect that every sentiment I have advanced will be
universally approved of However, I am not conscious of having writ-
ten a single Une with an intention either to flatter or offend any party
or person upon earth. I have simply declared my own viev/s and
feelings as I might have done if I had composed hymns in some of
the ne-v^y discovered islands in the South Sea, where no person h?.^.
any knowledge of the name of Jesus, but myself. I am a friend of
peace, and being- deeply convinced that no one can profitably under-
stand the great truths and doctrines of the gospel, any farther than
he is taught of God, I have not a wish to obtrude my own tenets
upon others, in a way of controversy : yet I do not tliink myself
bound to conceal them. Many gi-acious persons (for many such I am
persuaded there are) who differ from me, more or less, in those
points which are called Calvinistic, appear desirous that the Calvin-
ists should, for their sakes, studiously avoid every expression wiiich
they cannot approve. Yet few of them, I believe, impose a like re-
straint upon themselves, but think the importance of what they deem
to be truth, justifies tliem in speaking their sentiments plainly and
strongly. May I not have an equal liberty ? The views I have received
of the doctrines of grace arc cssentinl to my peace : I could not live
comfortably a day or an hour without them. I likevnse believe, yea,
so far as my poor attainments warrant me to speak, I know them to
be friendly to holiness, ajid to have a direct influence in producing
and maintaining a gospel conversation, and therefore I must not be
ashamed of them.
These Hymns are distributed into three Books. In the first I have
classed those which are formed upon select passages of Scripture!,
and placed them in the order of the Books of the Old and New Tes-
tament. The second contains occasional hymns, suited to particular
seasons, or suggested by prtrticular events or subjects. The third
Book is miscellaneous, comprising a variety of subjects, relative to
a life of faitli in the Son of God, which have no express refer«^nce
either to a single text of sc>*iptiu-e, or any determinate season or in-
cident. These are farther subdivided into distinct heads. This ar-
rangement is not so accurate, but that several of the Jiymns might
have been differently disposed. Some attention to method may be
thund convenient, though a logical exactness was hardly practicable.
As some subjects in the several books are nearly co-incident, I have,
under the divisions in the third Book, pointed ont those which ait
r.imilar in the two former ; and likewise, here and there, in tlte first
and second, made reference to hymns of a like import intlie third.
This publication, which, with my humble prayer to the Lord for
his blessing upon it, I ofl'er to the service and acceptance of all who
love the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity, of every name and in every
place, into \vhose hands it may come. I more particularly dedicate
it to my dear friends in tlie parish an*! neighbourhood of 0/un-, for
whose use the hymns were originally composed, as a testimony of
the sincere love I bear them, and as a token of my gi-atitude to the
Lord, and to them for tlic comfort and satisfaction with which the
discharge of my ministry among them has been attended.
The hour is approaching, and at my time of life cannot be very
distant, when my heart, my pen, and my tongue, will no longer be
able to move in their service. But I trust, white my heart continues
to beat, it will feel a warm desire for the prosperity of their souls ;
and while my hand can write, and my tongue speak, it will be the
business and pleasure of my life, to aim at prouioting their growth
and establishment in the grace of our God and Saviour. To this)-:.i-e-
cious grace I conunend them, and'earnestly intreat them, and ;i!l who
love his name, to strive mightily whh his prayers to God for ne, that
I may be preserved faithful to X]\q cnc^, and cnableil at last to finish
my course with joy. JOHN NEWTON
Olrej', Buch, Feb. 15, 177^.
OjV SELECT PASSAGES OF SCRIPTURE.
HYMN I. ADAM. Chap. ili.
"X f\^ man, in his own image made,
V^ How much did God bestow ?
The whole creation homage paid,
And own'd him, lord below !
2 He dwelt in Eden's garden, stor'd
With sweets for ev'ry sense ;
And there with his descending Lord,
He walk'd in confidence.
:3 But oh ! by sin how quickly changM !
His honour forfeited,
His heart from God and truth, estrang'd,
His conscience fiU'd with dread !
4 Now from his Maker's voice he flees,
which was before his joy ;
And thinks to hide amidst the trees,
from an all-seeing eye.
5 Compell'd to answer to his name ;
With stubbornness and pride]
He cast on God himself the blame,
Nor once for mercy cry'd.
6 But grace, unask'd, his heart subdued,
And all his guilt forgave ;
By faith the promis'd seed he view'd,
And felt iiis pow'r to save.
7 Thus we ourselves would justify.
Though we the law transgress;
Like him, unable to deny.
Unwilling to confess.
8 But when by faith the sinner sees.
A pardon bought with blood,
Then he forsakl&s his foolish pleas.
And rfs-^dlv \\vr:\^. to Cnc^.
G GENESIS. Bk. I.
II. CAIN AND ABEL. Chap. iv. 3 8.
1 -TXTHEN Adam fell, he quickly lost
VV God's image which he once possest ;
See yfll our nature since could boast
*In Cain, his first born son express'd !
2 The Sacrifice the Lord crdain'd
In type of the Redeemer's blood,
Self-righteous reasoning Cain disdain'd,
And thought his own first-fruits as good.
i5 Yet rage and envy fiU'd his mind,
When with a sullen downcast look,
-He saw his brother favourfind,
Who God's appointed method took.
4 By Cain's own hand good Abel dy'd.
Because the Lord approved his faith ;
And, when his blood for vengeance cry'd,
He vainly thought to hide his death.
.5 Such was the wicked murd'rer Cain,
And such by nature still are we.
Until by grace we're born again.
Malicious, blind, and proud, as he.
6 Like him the way of grace w^e slight
' And in our own devices trust.
Call evil good, and darkness light,
And hate and persecute the just.
7 The saints in ev'ry age and place.
Have found his history fulfill'd ;
The numbers all our thoughts surpass.
Of Abels, whom the Cains have kill'd (I)-!
8 Thus Jesus fell — but oh ! his blood
Far better things than Abel's cries : (2)
Obtains his raurd'rers peace with God,
And gains them mansions in the skies.
III. (c) Walking ivUh God. Chap. V. 24-1
OH 1 for a closer walk with God,
A calm and heav'nly frame ;
A light to shine upon the road
That leads me to the Lamb !
2 Where is the blessedness I knew
When first I saw the Lord ?
(I) Rem. viii. 3(?. (2) Heb. xii.. 24;
Hy. 4. GENESIS.
Where is the soul refreshing view
Of Jesus, and his word?
3 What peaceful hours I once enjoyM !
How sweet their mem'ry still ?
But they have left an aching void,
The w^orld can never fill
i Return, O holy Dove, return,
Sweet iTjessenger of rest ;
I hate the sins that made thee mourn,
And drove thee from my breast :
5 The dearest idol I have known,
Whate'er that idol be,
Help me to tear it from thy throne,
And worship only thee.
6 So shall my walk be close with God,
Calm and serene my frame ;
So purer light shall mark the road
That leads me to the Lamb.
1 T3 Y faith in Christ I walk with God,
X) With heav'n, my journey's end, in vie w
Supported by his staff and rod ( 1 ),
My road is safe and pleasant too.
2 I travel through a desart wide,
Where many round me blindly stray ;
But he vouchsafes to be my guide (2),
And will not let me miss my way.
3 Though snares and dangers throng my path.
And earth and hell my course withstand ;
I triumph over all by faith (3),
Guarded by his Almighty hand.
4 The wilderness affords no food.
But God for my support prepares ;
Provides me ev'ry needful good.
And frees my soul from wants and cares,
5 With him sweet converse I maintain,
Great as he is, I dare be free ;
I tell him all my grief and pain,
And he reveals his love to me.
6. Some cordial from his word he brings,
Whene'er my feeble spirit faints ;
(1) Psalm xxiii, 4.(2) Psalm, cvii. (s) Psalm xxvil i, £
S GENESIS Bk.K
At once my soul revives and sings.
And yields no more to sad complaints.
*? I pity all that worldlings talk
Of pleasures that will quickly end ;
Be this my choice, O Lord to walk
With thee, my Guide, my Guard, my FriendV
V. LOT in Sodom. Chap. xiii. 10.
1 T T OW hurtful was the choice of Lot,
XjL Who took up his abode
(Because it was a fruitful spot)
With them who fear not God !
2 A pris'ner he was quickly made.
Bereaved of all his store ;
And, but for Abraham's timely aid,
He had return'd no more.
3 Yet still he seem'd resolv'd to stay,
As if it were his rest ;
Akho' their sins from day to day (1)
His righteous soul distressed.
4 Awhile he stay'd with anxious mind,
Expos'd to scorn and strife ;
At last he left his all behind,
And fled to save his life.
.5 In vain his sons in-law he warnM,
They thought he told his dreams :
His daughters too, of him had learn'd.
And perished in the flames.
6 His wife escap'd a little way.
But dy'd for looking back :
Does not her case to pilgrims say,
" Beware of growing slack?'*
7 Yea Lot himself could ling'ring stand,
Tho' vengeance was in view ;
*Twas mercy pluck'd him by the hand.
Or he had perish'd too.
$ The doom of Sodom will be ours.
If to the earth we cleave ;
Lord quicken all our drowsy pow'riSj
To flee to thee and live.
(1) 2 Pet. ii, 8,
Hv. 7. GENESIS. 9
VI. (c) JEHOVAH-JIREH. The Lord w/7/
provide. Chap. xxii. 14.
1 r I 1 He saints should never be dismay'd,
JL Nor sink in hopeless fear ;
For when they least expect his aid,
The Saviour wiil appear.
2 This Abraham found, he rais'd the knife',,
God saw, and said, *' Forbear ;"
Yon ram shall yield his meaner life ;
Behold the victim there.
3 Once David seem'd Saul's certain prey 5
But hark ! the foe's at hand ( 1 )
Saul turns his arms another way,
To save the invaded land.
4 When Jonah sunk beneath the wave,
, Ke thought to raise no more (2) ;
But God prepar'd a fish to save,
And bear him to the shore.
5 Blest proofs of pow'r and grace divine,
That meet us in his word !
May ev'ry deep-felt care of mine
Be trusted with the Lord.
6 Wait for his seasonable aid.
And tho' it tarry, wait :
The promise may be long delay'd,
But cannot come too late.
VII. The Lord