Scripture Verse

The Lord…will come down, and tread upon the high places of the earth…the mountains shall be molten under Him, and the valleys shall be cleft, as wax before the fire, and as the waters that are poured down a steep place. Micah 1:3–4


Words: Charles Wes­ley, Hymns Oc­ca­sioned by the Earth­quake, March 8, 1750, Part 2 (Lon­don: Stra­han, 1750), num­ber 4, alt.

Music: Gött­ing­en, in The Pri­mi­tive Me­tho­dist Hym­nal, ed­it­ed by George Booth (Lon­don: Pri­mi­tive Me­tho­dist Pub­lish­ing House, 1889), num­ber 1007 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

Charles Wesley


Ah! Whither would ye fly
To screen your guilty heads?
Danger and death are always nigh,
Where’er a sinner treads:
Impenitent, ye strive
To ’scape with fruitless haste,
Whom earth must swallow up alive,
Or hell receive at last.

Tremble, ye Christless crowd,
Whom death and hell pursue,
Strangers, and enemies to God,
Alas! What will ye do?
In vain ye change your place,
If still unchanged your mind,
Or fly to distant climes, unless
Ye leave your sins behind.

Your sins for vengeance call,
Your sins the scourge demand,
Your sins have judgment brought on all
The sad polluted land:
Cursed for your only sake
The earth reels to and fro,
And lo! Its deep foundations shake,
And Tophet yawns below.

The nations to rebuke,
When God His power displays,
Earth trembles at His threatening look,
And moves, and shifts its place:
Infernal thunders roar,
And speak His kindled ire,
And hills dissolve like wax before
The sin consuming fire.

Who can escape the wreck
In that vindictive day?
The mountains at His presence quake,
In fear they flee away;
The rocks He rends and tears,
And violently throws down;
And nature in convulsions bears
The terror of His frown.

Strong towers, and massy walls,
From their foundations leap,
The Heav’n invading city falls
Into a ruinous heap;
His destined prey to seize,
Old ocean bursts his chain;
The fountains of the great abyss
Are broken up again.

On hell’s apparent brink
Who shall the sinner save?
See cities, men, and kingdoms sink
Into a common grave!
What man the earth survives,
The earth to chaos hurled,
While final ruin fiercely drives
Her ploughshare o’er the world!

Does refuge yet remain?
Yes, it shall e’er endure!
A place where peace and safety reign,
And sinners rest secure;
A hidden place above,
Where once the prophet stood,
And saw the majesty of love,
And saw the passing God.

Hither, ye worms, come up,
Who from His judgments fly,
And meet Him on the mountain top,
And on His love rely;
Safe in the sacred Rock,
Look down on all beneath,
And at destruction smile, and mock
The pointless darts of death.

What though the earth remove,
Believers need not fear,
Hid in the cleft of dying love,
While death and hell are near;
A house believers have
Eternal in the skies,
And find a life beyond the grave,
A life that never dies.