Hymn 327. The Presence of Christ the Joy of his People

The wondering nations have beheld

The sacred prophecy fulfill’d,

And angels hail’d the glorious morn

That saw the great Messiah born:

The prince! the Saviour, long desir’d,

Whom prophets taught, by Heaven inspir’d,

And shew’d far off the blissful day;

Rise o’er the world with healing ray.

Oft in the temples of his grace

His saints behold his smiling face,

And oft have seen his glory shine,

With power and majesty divine:

But soon alas, his absence mourn,

And pray and wish his kind return;

Without his life-inspiring light,

’Tis all a scene of gloomy night.

Come, dearest Lord, thy children cry,

Our graces droop, our comforts die:

Return, and let thy glories rise,

Again to our admiring eyes:

’Till fill’d with light, and joy, and love,

Thy courts below, like those above,

Triumphant hallelujahs raise,

And Heaven and earth resound thy praise.

Collection of Hymns Adapted to Public Worship, no. 327 (all six stanzas); Poems, 1780, vol. 1, pp. 109-10; no MS copy; also Nonconformist Women Writers, vol. 2, p. 106.