The Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night: and God said, 1 Kings 3:5–9
Ask what I shall give thee. And Solomon said…
Give therefore Thy servant an understanding heart to judge Thy people, that I may discern between good and bad.
Words: John Newton, Olney Hymns (London: W. Oliver, 1779), Book 1, number 32. Some hymnals omit the opening stanzas, and start with the verse that begins
And dost Thou say…
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If Solomon for wisdom prayed,
The Lord before had made him wise;
Else he another choice had made,
And asked for what the worldlings prize.
Thus He invites his people still,
He first instructs them how to choose;
Then bids them ask whate’er they will,
Assured that He will not refuse.
Our wishes would our ruin prove,
Could we our wretched choice obtain;
Before we feel the Savior’s love,
Kindle our love to Him again.
But when our hearts perceive His worth,
Desires, till then unknown, take place;
Our spirits cleave no more to earth,
But pant for holiness and grace.
And dost Thou say,
Ask what Thou wilt?
Lord, I would seize the golden hour;
I pray to be released from guilt,
And freed from sin and Satan’s power.
More of Thy presence, Lord, impart,
More of Thine image let me bear;
Erect thy throne within my heart,
And reign without a rival there.
Give me to read my pardon sealed,
And from Thy joy to draw my strength;
To have Thy boundless love revealed
In all its height, and breadth, and length.
Grant these requests, I ask no more
But to Thy care the rest resign;
Sick or in health, or rich or poor,
All shall be well if Thou art mine.