Michael Wigglesworth (1631—1705)
Of times neglected, of means rejected,
of God’s long-suffering
And Pati-ence, to Penitence
that sought hard hearts to bring;
Why chords of love did nothing move,
to shame or to remorse?
Why warnings grave, and counsels, have
naught chang’d their sinful course?
Why chastenings, and evils things,
why judgments so severe.
Prevailéd not with them a jot,
nor wrought an awful fear?
Why promises of Holiness,
and new Obedience,
They oft did make, but always brake
the same, to God’s offense?
Why still Hell-ward, without regard,
they bold venturéd,
And chose Damnation before Salvation,
when it was offeréd?
Why sinful pleasures and earthly treasures,
like fools, they prizéd more
Than Heav’nly wealth. Eternal health,
and all Christ’s Royal store?
Why, when he stood off’ring his Blood
to wash them from their sin,
They would embrace no saving Grace,
but liv’d and died therein?
Such aggravations, where no evasions,
nor false pretences hold,
Exaggerate and cumulate
guilt more than can be told.