Scripture Verse

My days are like a shadow that declineth; and I am withered like grass. Psalm 102:11

Introduction

portrait
John Newton
(1725–1807)

Words: John New­ton, Ol­ney Hymns (Lon­don: W. Ol­iv­er, 1779), Book 2, num­ber 1. The last stan­za has al­so been pub­lished as a sep­a­rate hymn.

Music: Be­ne­ven­to, ar­ranged from Sam­u­el Webbe, Sr., 1792 (🔊 pdf nwc).

portrait
Samuel Webbe, Sr.
(1740–1816)

Lyrics

While with ceaseless course the sun
Hasted through the former year,
Many souls their race have run,
Never more to meet us here;
Fixed in an eternal fate,
They have done with all below;
We a little longer wait,
But how little—none can know.

As the wingèd arrow flies
Speedily the mark to find;
As the lightning from the skies
Darts, and leaves no trace behind;
Swiftly thus our fleeting days
Bear us down life’s rapid stream;
Upwards, Lord, our spirits raise,
All below is but a dream.

Thanks for mercies past receive,
Pardon of our sins renew;
Teach us, henceforth, how to live
With eternity in view:
Bless Thy Word to young and old,
Fill us with a Savior’s love;
And when life’s short tale is told,
May we dwell with Thee above.