Scripture Verse

What think ye of Christ? Matthew 22:42

Introduction

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John Newton
1725–1807

Words: John New­ton, Ol­ney Hymns (Lon­don: W. Ol­iv­er, 1779), Book 1, num­ber 89.

Music: Green Fields, from The Pea­sant Can­ta­ta (Mer hahn en neue Ob­er­keet), by Jo­hann S. Bach, 1742. Ar­ranged by Lew­is Ed­son in The Cho­ris­ter’s Com­pan­ion (New Ha­ven, Con­nec­ti­cut: 1782) (🔊 pdf nwc).

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Johann S. Bach
1685–1750

Lyrics

What think ye of Christ? is the test
To try both your state and your scheme;
You can­not be right in the rest,
Unless you think right­ly of Him.

As Je­sus ap­pears in your view,
As He is be­lov­èd or not;
So God is dis­pos­èd to you,
And mer­cy or wrath are your lot.

Some take Him a crea­ture to be,
A man, or an an­gel at most;
Sure these have not feel­ings like me,
Nor know them­selves wretch­ed and lost:

So guil­ty, so help­less, am I,
I durst not con­fide in His blood,
Nor on His pro­tect­ion rely,
Unless I were sure He is God.

Some call Him a Sav­ior, in word,
But mix their own works with His plan;
And hope He His help will af­ford,
When they have done all that they can:

If do­ings prove ra­ther too light
(A lit­tle, they own, they may fail)
They pur­pose to make up full weight,
By cast­ing His name in the scale.

Some style Him the pearl of great price,
And say He’s the foun­tain of joys;
Yet feed up­on fol­ly and vice,
And cleave to the world and its toys:

Like Ju­das, the Sav­ior they kiss,
And, while they sa­lute Him, be­tray;
Ah! what will pro­fess­ion like this
Avail in His ter­ri­ble day?

If asked, what of Je­sus I think?
Though still my best thoughts are but poor;
I say, He’s my meat and my drink,
My life, and my strength, and my store,

My shep­herd, my hus­band, my friend,
My Sav­ior from sin and from thrall;
My hope from be­gin­ning to end,
My por­tion, my Lord, and my all.