The Creatures in the Lord’s Hands~John Newton (1725-1807)

The water stood like walls of brass,
to let the sons of Israel pass;
and from the rock in rivers burst,
at Moses’ prayer to quench their thirst.

The fire restrain’d by God’s commands,
could only burn his people’s bands;”
too faint, when he was with them there,
to singe their garments of their hair.

At Daniel’s feet the lions lay
like harmless lambs, nor touch’d their prey;
and ravens, which on carrion fed,
procur’d Elijah flesh and bread.

Thus creatures only can fulfill
their great Creator’s holy will;
and when his servants need their aid,
his purposes must be obey’d.

So if his blessings he refuse,
their pow’r to help they quickly lose;
sure as on creatures we depend,
our hopes in disappointment end.

Then let us trust the LORD alone,
and creature-confidence disown;
nor if they threaten need we fear,
they cannot hurt if he be near.

If instruments of pain they prove,
still are guided by his love;
and lancets by the surgeon’s skill,
which wound to cure, and not to kill.

Chance to Interact: Do you have a favorite hymn? Why is it your favorite?


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