Scripture Verse

They have blown the trumpet…but none goeth to the battle. Ezekiel 7:14


Horatius Bonar (1808–1889)

Words: Ho­ra­ti­us Bonar, Hymns of Faith and Hope (Lon­don: James Nis­bet, 1857) pag­es 49–53.

Music: Sail­ing Phi­lip P. Bliss, 1871 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Philip P. Bliss (1838–1876)


’Tis the sum­mons to bat­tle!
But the cry is un­heard;
The trum­pet has spok­en,
Not a war­ri­or has stirred.
Hark, the sum­mons to bat­tle!
It has sound­ed again;
Still loud­er and keen­er;
It has sound­ed in vain.

Yet a third time, and shrill­er,
That war-note has blown;
But the an­swer that com­eth
Is the ec­ho alone.
’Tis the si­lence of si­lence!
Tower, tent, and vale, and hill,
Field, for­est, and high­way—
All are sound­less and still!

No chal­lenge is lift­ed,
No sig­nal un­furled;
’Tis man’s dark hour of ter­ror,
The awe of the world.
For the arm of Je­ho­vah
Has been bared in its might,
And the sword of His ven­geance
Has been bur­nished to smite.

Through the ridg­es of bat­tle
His plough­share has sped;
And the tents of the liv­ing
Are the tombs of the dead.
The rude roar of mill­ions
Is hushed in an hour;
The ar­ray of the migh­ty
Is crushed in its pow­er.

’Twas man’s proud­est mus­ter
Of sin­ew and steel:
His ar­my of arm­ies,
Mail-clad to the heel.
No sun had e’er dawned on
So fear­ful a day,
No trum­pet had mar­shaled
So dread an ar­ray.

As if earth in her fren­zy,
From each re­gion afar,
Had poured forth her na­tions
For the shock of that war.
In the flush of their man­hood,
In the bud of their prime,
In ve­ter­an ripe­ness,
The men of each clime,

Came throng­ing and rush­ing,
Like ri­vers in flood,
Defying the ter­rors
And ven­geance of God.
For the rul­er of dark­ness,
The god of this world,
Had sum­moned his ar­mies,
His ban­ner un­furled.

As the storm-cloud it ga­thered,
As the light­ning it sped;
As the mist it has van­ished;
All is still as the dead.
Like the de­sert at mid­night,
Not a breath nor a beam;
’Tis the si­lence of si­lence,
The dream of a dream;

Now, chains for the spoil­er!
Dark and swift be his doom!
Thou hast trod­den the na­tions—
Thy tread­ing is come!
Earth, cease now thy wail­ing,
Thy wounds bleed no more;
Lo, the curse is de­part­ing,
Thy sor­rows are o’er!

Thy long night is end­ing
Of sor­row and wrong;
For shame there is glo­ry,
For weep­ing a song.
The new morn­ing is dawn­ing,
Bursts forth the new sun;
The new ver­dure is smil­ing,
The new age is begun.