Words: August G. Spangenberg, in the Appendix to the Moravian Gesang-Buch, 1737, number 1004 (Der König ruht, und schauet doch). Translated from German to English by John Wesley, Hymns and Sacred Poems, 1742, pages 14–17.
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High on His everlasting throne,
The King of saints His work surveys;
Marks the dear souls He calls His own,
And smiles on the peculiar race.
He rests well pleased their toils to see;
Beneath His easy yoke they move;
With all their heart and strength agree
In the sweet labor of His love.
His eye the world at once looks thro’,
A vast uncultivated field!
Mountains and vales, in ghastly show,
A barren uncouth prospect yield.
Cleared of the thorns by human care,
A few less hideous wastes are seen,
Yet still they all continue bare,
And not one spot of earth is green.
See where the servants of their God,
A busy multitude, appear;
For Jesus day and night employed,
His heritage they toil to clear.
The love of Christ their hearts constrains,
And strengthens their unwearied hands,
The spend their sweat, and blood, and pains,
To cultivate Immanuel’s Land.
Alarmed at their successful toil,
Satan, and his wild spirits rage;
They labor to tear up and spoil,
And blast the rising heritage.
In every wilderness they sow
The seed of death, the carnal mind,
They would not let one virtue grow,
Or leave one seed of good behind.
Yet still the servants of their Lord
Look up, and calmly persevere,
Supported by the Master’s Word,
The adverse powers they scorn to fear.
Gladly their happy work pursue:
The labor of their hands is seen;
Their hands the face of earth renew,
Diversified with cheerful green.
Where’er the faithful workers turn,
The steps of industry appear,
They labor the dry wood to burn,
They labor with incessant care,
The fruits of Sodom to tread down,
To root up each accursèd seed,
By Satan and his servants sown,
And plant the Gospel in its stead.
To dig the ground, they all bestow
Their lives; from every softened clod
They gather out the stones, and sow
Th’immortal see, the Word of God.
They water it with tears and prayers,
They long for the returning Word;
Happy, if all their pains and cares
Can bring forth fruit to please their Lord.
Jesus their toil delighted sees,
Their industry vouchsafes to crown;
He kindly gives the wished increase,
And sends the promised blessing down.
The sa[p of life, the Spirit’s powers,
He rains incessant from above;
He all His gracious fullness showers,
To perfect their great work of love.
He prospers all His servants’ toils:
But of peculiar grace has chose
A flock, on whom He kindest smiles,
And choicest blessings He bestows.
Devoted to their common Lord,
True followers of the bleeding Lamb,
By God beloved, by men abhorred—
And Herrnhut is the favorite name!
Here many a faithful soul is found,
With mystic power endued;
Full of the light of life, and crowned,
A king and priest to serve His God.
With flaming zeal for Christ they shine,
Their body, soul and spirit give,
To Christ their goods and blood resign,
For Christ they freely die and live.
What can we offer our good Lord
(Poor nothings!) for His boundless grace?
Fain would we His great name record,
And worthily set forth His praise.
Dear object of our growing love,
To whom our more than all we owe,
Open the fountain from above,
And let it our full soul o’erflow.
So shall our lives Thy power proclaim,
Thy grace for every sinner free,
Till all mankind shall learn Thy name,
Shall all stretch out their hands to Thee.
Open a door which earth and hell
May strive to shut, but strive in vain:
Let Thy Word richly in us dwell,
And let our gracious fruit remain.
O multiply Thy sower’s seed!
And fruit we every hour shall bear;
Throughout the world Thy Gospel spread,
Thine everlasting truth declare!
We all in perfect love renewed
Shall know the greatness of Thy power,
Stand in the temple of our God
As pillars, and go out no more.