John Newton

(24 July 1725 – 21 December 1807 / London, England)

Balaam's Wish


How blest the righteous are
When they resign their breath!
No wonder Balaam wished to share
In such a happy death.

Oh! let me die, said he,
The death the righteous do;
When life is ended let me be
Found with the faithful few.

The force of truth how great!
When enemies confess,
None but the righteous whom they hate,
A solid hope possess.

But Balaam's wish was vain,
His heart was insincere;
He thirsted for unrighteous gain,
And sought a portion here.

He seemed the Lord to know,
And to offend him loth;
But Mammon proved his overthrow,
For none can serve them both.

May you, my friends, and I,
Warning from hence receive;
If like the righteous we would die,
To choose the life they live.

Submitted: Monday, April 19, 2010

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