Scripture Verse

You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. Matthew 23:27


John B. Dykes

Words: Charles Wes­ley, Hymns and Sac­red Po­ems (Bris­tol, Eng­land: Fe­lix Far­ley, 1742), pag­es 63-65.

Music: Ol­iv­et (Dykes) John B. Dykes, 1870 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Charles Wesley


Ah! my dear, loving Lord,
To Thee what shall I say?
Behold I tremble at Thy word,
And scarce presume to pray:
Ten thousand wants have I,
Alas! I all things want,
And Thou hast bid me always cry.
And never, never faint.

Yet now, Thou know’st, I fear,
I fear to ask Thy grace,
So often have I, Lord, drawn near.
And mocked Thee to Thy face:
With all pollutions stained,
Thy hallowed Courts I trod,
Thy name and temple I profaned
And dared to call Thee God.

Nigh with my lips I drew,
My lips were all unclean;
Thee with my heart I never knew,
My heart was full of sin;
Far from the living God,
As far as hell from Heav’n,
Thy purity I still abhorred,
Nor wished to be forgiv’n.

My nature I obeyed,
My own desires pursued,
And still a den of thieves I made,
The hallowed house of God;
The worship He approves
To Him I would not pay;
My selfish ends, and creature-loves
Had stole my heart away.

My sin and nakedness
I studied to disguise,
Spoke to my soul a flattering peace,
And put out mine own eyes;
In fig leaves I appeared,
Nor with my form would part,
But still retained a conscience feared,
An hard, deceitful heart.

A goodly, formal saint
I long appeared in sight,
By self and Satan taught to paint
My tomb, my nature, white:
The harisee within
Still undisturbed remained,
The strong man armed with guilt of sin
Safe in his palace reigned.

But O! the jealous God
In my behalf came down,
Jesus Himself the stronger showed,
And claimed me for His own:
My Spirit He alarmed,
And brought into distress,
He shook, and bound the strong man, armed
In His self righteousness.

Faded my virtuous show,
My form without the power,
The sin convincing spirit blew,
And blasted every flower;
My mouth was stopped, and shame
Covered my guilty face,
I fell on the atoning Lamb,
And I was saved by grace.