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Hark! how time's wide sounding bell

Hark! how time�s wide sounding bell
Strikes on each attentive ear!
Tolling loud the solemn knell
Of the late departed year:
Years, like mortals, wear away,
Have their birth, and dying day;
Youthful spring, and wintry age,
Then to others quit the stage.

Sad experience may relate
What a year the last has been!
Crops of sorrow have been great,
From the fruitful seeds of sin:
O! what numbers gay and blithe,
Fell by death�s unsparing scythe?
While they thought the world their own,
Suddenly he mowed them down.

See how war, with dreadful stride,
Marches at the Lord�s command,
Spreading desolation wide,
Through a once much-favored land:
War, with heart and arms of steel,
Preys on thousands at a meal;
Daily drinking human gore,
Still he thirsts, and calls for more.

If the God, Whom we provoke,
Hither should His way direct;
What a sin-avenging stroke
May a land, like this, expect!
They who now securely sleep,
Quickly then, would wake and weep;
And too late would learn to fear,
When they saw the danger near.

You are safe, who know His love,
He will all His truth perform;
To your souls a refuge prove
From the rage of every storm:
But we tremble for the youth;
Teach them, Lord, Thy saving truth;
Join them to Thy faithful few,
Be to them a Refuge too.


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