Night had fallen on the city,
And the streets at last were still,
Where the noisy throng the day-long,
Did the air with shoutings fill.
And the weary wayworn travelers
Preaching Jesus thro’ the land,
Were in deepest dungeon darkness,
At the magistrates’ command.
Many stripes to them were given
Many curses on them cast;
Many bolts and bars surround them,
In the stocks their feet were fast.
While the trusty Roman jailer,
All securely slumbering on,
Little dreamed the mighty wonder
Of the morrow’s early dawn.
Hark the sighing of the prisoners,
Hear their moanings loud and long;
No, again, and louder, clearer,
’Tis the voice of prayer and song.
See, the prison walls are shaking,
And the door wide open stands;
Lo, the earth, the earth is quaking,
Loosed are every prisoner’s bands.
Oh, there’s not a cell so lonely,
But a song may echo there;
Oh, there’s not a night so cheerless,
But there’s potency in prayer.
Sing, oh sing, thou weary pilgrim,
Song will bring thee heav’nly peace,
Pray, oh pray, thou burdened prisoner,
God will give thee sweet release.