Scripture Verse

Behold, I make all things new. Revelation 21:5


Horatius Bonar

Words: Ho­ra­ti­us Bo­nar, The Song of the New Cre­a­tion (Lon­don: James Nis­bet, 1872), pag­es 1–21, alt.

Music: Col­o­nel Hill Scott Wer­de­baugh, 2017 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Scott Werdebaugh


It draweth near!
That day—of days the day—
For which the Bridegroom waits,
For which the virgins pray;
For which earth sighs, and hastes
To greet it on its way;
Asking, as on it comes,
Why this so long delay?
It draweth near at last!
Who shall its advent stay?

It hastes to rise!
That sun—of suns the sun—
Whose rising is the pledge
Of evil all undone,
Of darkness at an end,
And heav’nly day begun;
The war of ages o’er,
And the last battle won.
It hasteth to arise,
Its glorious race to run.

It breathes o’er earth!
That balm-exhaling air,
In Heav’n’s own odors steeped,
To our sick world to bear
The health of that pure realm:
No sickness, pain, and where
True life has its abode,
And in which all things rare
Flourish, but never fade,
Divinely soft and fair.

It swelleth forth!
That song—of songs the song—
Creation’s melody,
From harps till now unstrung,
The new, sweet, matin hymn,
As yet on earth unsung,
Poured in rich burst of praise
From every heart and tongue;
The anthem of a world
Redeemed from woe and wrong.

Behold, He comes!
And with Him comes the love
Which makes these wastes below
Like heav’n of heav’ns above;
When round His central throne
Shall all creation move;
No atom out of place,
No will to swerve or rove;
Swayed by the silent breath.
Of the eternal Dove.

He comes in power!
The King—of kings the King—
All righteousness and peace
In His right hand to bring;
Into the last abyss
Each rebel crown to fling;
Time’s ages of misrule
To end; that now may spring
His order, law and light
Beneath His holy wing.

He comes in pomp!
The holy pomp of Heav’n,
When sin is at its height,
And earth is all unshriv’n.
Scorched by no human fire,
No cloud-begotten levin,
His banded foes fall back,
Before His fury driv’n.
The nations of the world
Into His hand are giv’n.

He comes in light!
Girt with His golden zone,
Arrayed in heav’nly white,
With light His pathway strewn.
Like a long absent prince
Returning to his throne;
No more disowned, unloved,
No more unpraised, unknown;
He comes to share His light
And glory with His own.

He speaks at last
The word—of words the word:
Lo, I make all things new!
And now with sweet accord
The heav’ns and earth obey;
The universe is stirred
When, from the throne of thrones,
The potent voice is heard,
Old things now pass away,
And Eden is restored.

The foe is bound
With the unbreaking chain;
The spoiler now is spoiled,
No more o’er earth to reign;
Purged is creation now
From the primeval stain
Of the old serpent’s trail.
Never to rise again,
The prince of evil falls,
Slain with the mighty slain.

Death’s reign is done!
The grave gives up its dead;
The blessèd sleepers wake,
One with their blessèd Head.
Life triumphs over death,
The enemy has fled;
The tyrant of the tomb
Is now a captive led,
Upon his head at last
His slaughters visited.

The curse is gone!
The blessing comes instead;
And now, where’er we go,
On hallowed ground we tread.
The canopy of love
Is stretched above our head;
The soil, no longer cursed,
Is like a garden spread;
The wilderness re-blooms
With verdure overlaid.

All strife is o’er!
Ended the world’s rude jar;
And universal peace
Succeeds the age of war.
Man’s pride, and rage, and hate,
Have gone and left no scar;
Of all that laid earth waste,
Nothing remains to mar
The mellow calm that rests
On all things near and far.

No sorrow comes!
All tears are wiped away;
No shade of weariness
On eye or brow can stay.
Sweet song of each new morn,
The same as yesterday.
Faith’s future wears no frown,
And hope knows no delay;
No cloud of unbelief
Absorbs one heavenly ray.

New heav’n and earth,
In holy beauty bright,
Arise and shine, like morn
When ends the clouded night.
New heav’n, and earth, and sea,
Free from all stain and blight,
Spread out their sparkling robes,
Their raiment clean and white—
O region of the pure,
Land of unknown delight!

Zion awakes,
Jerusalem puts on
Her beauty and her strength;
True city of the Sun,
Thy light, thy light is come;
Ascend thy shining throne!
Thy warfare now is o’er,
Thy enemies o’erthrown;
Wave, wave thy palm on high,
Thy victory is won.

City of peace!
In bridal beauty clad,
Thy day of mourning done,
No more thy voice is sad.
Thy King is in thee now;
He who in anger bade
Thy foes exult o’er thee;
He who in vengeance had
Sent fire into thy towers,
Has come to make thee glad.

O pleasant land!
Land of the mighty, too.
No cloud remains to dim
Thy sky of stainless blue.
No lion shall be there,
Nor beast of prey pass through;
Thy fields, and vales, and streams,
How excellent to view!
Upon thy thousand hills
Glistens the holy dew.

The storm is spent!
Faint breathing into balm;
The Master’s Peace, be still!
Has wrought the blessèd calm.
And now the breeze of Heav’n
Sighs soft through each fair palm;
The voice of righteous men
Swells out in each glad psalm,
Praise to the Son of God,
Praise to the great I AM.

The sword is sheathed!
The spear is flung aside;
The gathered hosts disband,
And scatter far and wide.
Man’s blood no longer stains
The river’s crystal tide;
The sky no longer rings
With shouts of human pride.
’Tis universal peace,
Each note of war has died.

Jehovah reigns!
And now the nations praise;
The Christ of God is King;
In righteousness He sways,
O’er all the happy world,
The scepter of His grace;
The kingdoms all are His,
His strength the earth upstays;
His glory fills the heav’ns,
His word the world obeys.

City of sun and gold,
The dwelling of the saints,
Descendeth, as foretold,
In words of living fire,
By Hebrew seers of old;
Of the one flock of God,
The everlasting fold;
Earth’s tribes walk in its light
And glory manifold.

The city shines
In splendor from afar,
In bright round firmament,
Like newly burnished star.
Eternal love within;
No din, nor strife, nor jar:
For all of every clime
Its pearly gates unbar;
Peace walks its golden streets,
Fled every sound of war!

No sun by day!
By night no moon they need;
Jehovah is their light,
From mist and darkness freed.
The Lamb upon the throne
Is all the light they need;
He to the wells of life
Daily His own doth lead;
And on His pastures green
Sweetly His own doth feed.

Clear flows the stream
From the supernal throne;
Stream of eternity,
All heav’nly streams in one;
Whose waters carry life
And freshness all their own,
With immortality
And gladness now unknown.
Upon its banks are heard
The songs of joy alone.

Blessèd are they
Who to the great repast,
The supper of the Lamb,
Are called, that they may taste
The heav’nly viands there;
Who at that table rest,
Drinking in all its love,
Reclining on the breast
Of Him who is Himself
The Master and the feast.

No night is there!
No shadow ever falls
Upon thy golden streets,
Or stains thy jasper walls.
No watchman on thy towers
The midnight warning calls;
No plund’rer of the dark
The startled ear appalls.
’Tis endless festival
Within thy princely halls.

Thy citizens
No coming sunset dread;
Above them mildest light
Of softest sky is spread,
No more by wasting storms
To be revisited.
Nor age nor siege they fear;
All enemies have fled.
The glory now returns
To rest above thy head.

The tree of life
Yieldeth its endless store;
Twelve harvests year by year.
The palm and sycamore,
The olive of the hills,
Old Judah’s tree of yore,
No beauty had like this,
Nor such abundance bore;
Its very leaves are life
And health for evermore.

The Cross has won!
The Galilean now
Has conquered in the fight
For us He smote the foe,
For us He led the war,
And laid the strong one low.
His blood hath washed the earth,
And purged all things below;
Earth’s glory now is His;
Its crown is on His brow.

The song goes up!
From every breathing thing
Upon the holy soil
From which th’old serpent’s sting
Has been for ever plucked;
Streams, hills, and forests bring,
In sweetly swelling strains,
Their happy offering;
And praises everywhere
Ascend to earth’s one King.

Glory to God!
Glory to Christ the Lord;
Glory in earth and Heav’n,
Glory with one accord;
To Him who earth upholds
By His almighty word;
To Him by whom all things
Have been at last restored
His is the name of names,
In Heav’n and earth adored.

Thrice-happy earth!
Once guilty, now forgiv’n;
From which has been expelled
The all-defiling leav’n.
Oh what a day is thine,
The brightest of the sev’n!
The day of days, ere long
To be in mercy giv’n,
When Heav’n shall be on earth,
And earth shall all be Heav’n.

Thrice-happy earth!
All perfect, beauteous fair;
Which of the orbs above
May once with thee compare?
Gem of the universe!
The seat of beauty rare;
Dear home of love and truth,
Of all things perfect, where
Reigneth the righteous King,
Creation’s Lord and Heir.

Thrice-happy earth!
Henceforth the first and best
Of handiworks divine;
Once ruined and unblest;
Now washed and beautified,
The place of God’s own rest
Throughout eternal age,
In splendor manifest,
As the one blood-bought orb,
The island of the blest.

Great mystery!
Among the orbs that are
Sparkling above in light;
Of all, both near and far,
The brightest and the best:
Once seat of woe and jar,
The least and loneliest;
Now with no sin to mar,
It rolls in new-born glow,
The one redeemèd star.

Thy fellows shine,
Each in his own clear light;
But not like thine their glow,
So exquisitely bright;
On which has never shone
A love so infinite
As that which thou hast found—
The love which washes white
Sin’s stain, and into day
Turns dark, profoundest night.

Upon their soil
No cross has ever stood.
They have no Bethlehem,
And no incarnate God.
They have no Golgotha,
And no all-purging blood;
No lamb of sacrifice,
No cleansing laver-flood;
No priestly word of peace
That makes all evil good.

’Tis not their soil
(Though with all beauty stored,
And sparkling fair and bright,
As all with one accord
They speak their Maker’s praise),
Of which th’eternal Word
Took part, where blood divine
Was spilt, love freely poured.
They cannot claim to be
Of kindred with their Lord.

They cannot say,
’Twas here He lived and died,
And here upon this tree
For us was crucified.

This earth of ours alone,
Of all the orbs beside,
The million orbs of space,
Can claim to be allied
To Godhead; and to Heav’n
So firmly, sweetly tied.

Their history,
Great though perchance it be,
And full of miracle—
The wondrous history
Of more stupendous orbs
Sweeping in majesty
Round wider, stranger depths
Of vast infinity—
Is not like ours, so fraught
With heav’nly mystery.

This earthly orb
Is dull, and poor, and small;
Thick clouds engirdle it
Like a funereal pall.
It wheels through narrow space
An obscure silent ball;
And to a thousand suns
Is debtor still for all
The daily, nightly lights
That gently on it fall.

Yet to this globe
All Godhead has come down;
Here is the link divine
That knits the upper throne
To creaturehood below,
Never to be undone!
This world, long wandering
Without a star or sun,
That seemed for ever lost,
Is now for ever won.

For ever won!
Plucked from the power of sin,
And made all holiness.
Now with the sons of men
God’s tents for ever pitched!
No shadow of a stain;
On all Creation’s round!
The old destroyer slain;
And now at last begun
The pure and holy reign.

The reign of right
Supplants the sway of wrong;
The reign of promised peace
To earth has come: the long,
Long era of the blest!
With now unloosèd tongue
The nations utter praise;
Earth’s broken harp is strung,
Creation now is glad,
And sings its ancient song.

Earth is all new!
A beauty now is giv’n
Greater than what it lost;
Its fetters all are riv’n;
Creation is set free,
And the dark spoiler driv’n
From his usurpèd seat;
The foul, corrupting leav’n
Of evil is purged out,
And earth is one with Heav’n.

Most holy place!
O beauty ever fair;
O fields that never fade,
O rich and balmy air;
O home for ever freed
From weariness and care;
O halls in which the robes
Of festival they wear!
No dread of coming change
Disturbs the gladness there.

New heav’ns, new earth!
Knit sweetly into one,
No more to separate:
The ancient curse is gone;
With no sad seed of death
Thy purgèd soil is sown;
Thy seas no tempests know,
Thy skies no clouded sun;
God’s purpose is fulfilled,
The age of evil done!