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How keen are the pains of a spiritual birth,
When its dreadful attendants invade!
The soul is a stranger to music and mirth,
But spiritual travail is life in disguise,
Though with imminent dangers beset; The voice of the prophets calls flames from the skies; Yea, and Moses pursues us for debt,
All crimes from the cradle come fresh to the mind, Transgression's presented to view;
While Satan accuses for every crime,
Yea, and Conscience repeats-it is true.
Jehovah erects his tribunal within,
And the criminal trembles with guilt; The billows of wrath stir the motions of sin, And the arrows of vengeance are felt.
His feigned profession is totally marr'd,
Both torments and terrors invade;
The door of kind Mercy seems bolted and barr'd,
All friends stand aloof, and acquaintances hide,
I envy'd the brutes which dissolve with the day,
The pains of the damn'd rack'd my mind with dismay,
I cavill'd with Mercy, and trembled at Fate,
This fearing, and doubting, and hoping between;
My follies were link'd like a chain to my soul,
I look'd for a friend, or for some to condole,
On my wearisome bed I courted the day,
And at morning I woo'd for the night; I mourned to think in what darkness I lay, And yet trembled as much at the light.
If I made my confession in private alone,
Yet I fain would have fled from his hand.
The horrors of justice, and terrors of death,
How dreadful to travel this perilous path,
This sorrowful travail, what will it avail,
My cruel companions, they daily deride,
Can such a conception be found in the dead?
But, though of all strength I am wholly bereav'd, And deliverance hid from my view;
Yet, still in child-bearing the spouse must be sav'd; Old Adam must yield to the New.
My Saviour perceiv'd me when sunk in distress,
He yielded to prayer, and granted redress;
He deliver'd my spirit by knowledge profound,
The Saviour perceiv'd me to melt in the flame,
He perfumed my soul, and revived my frame;
Now, Moses, from bondage my soul is enlarg'd;
I thought you my friend: and you knew I was poor,
But, had I suspected your rigour before,
To deceive and to strip is but to defraud,
Your tribes of disciples may boast of their head,
I thought to have rais'd your demand from my trade,
But, when I perceiv'd you arrested the dead,
A second discharge of a bill that is past
The sum for the which you arrested me last,
Why so many preachers, I cannot devise;
Of help from the law I for ever despair'd,
What mortal can think he, with truth, can be clear'd,
Vain rebels can sport with the bounds of the Mount,
And wantonly dream of a balanc'd account,
In open defiance, they daringly peep,
They boast of escaping the deluge of wrath,
And hope to get life from the sentence of death,
They seek for a portion with glorify'd saints,
And call out for mercy, and urge their complaints,