Preparatory Meditations - First Series: 39 - Poem by Edward Taylor
(I John 2:1. If any Man Sin, We Have an Advocate)
My sin! My sin, my God, these cursed dregs,
Green, yellow, blue-streaked poison hellish, rank,
Bubs hatched in nature's nest on serpents' eggs,
Yelp, chirp, and cry; they set my soul a-cramp.
I frown, chide, strike, and fight them, mourn and cry
To conquer them, but cannot them destroy.
I cannot kill or coop them up: my curb
'S less than a snaffle in their mouth: my reins
They as a twine thread snap: by hell they're spurred:
And load my soul with swagging loads of pains.
Black imps, young devils, snap, bite, drag to bring
And pick me headlong hell's dread whirlpool in.
Lord, hold Thy hand: for handle me Thou mayst
In wrath: but oh, a twinkling ray of hope
Methinks I spy Thou graciously display'st.
There is an advocate: a door is ope.
Sin's poison swell my heart would till it burst,
Did not a hope hence creep in 't thus and nurse 't.
Joy, joy, God's son's the sinner's advocate,
Doth plead the sinner guiltless, and a saint.
But yet attornies' pleas spring from the state,
The case is in: if bad, it's bad in plaint.
My papers do contain no pleas that do
Secure me from, but knock me down to, woe.
I have no plea mine advocate to give:
What now? He'll anvil arguments great store
Out of His flesh and blood to make thee live.
O dear-bought arguments: good pleas therefore.
Nails made of heavenly steel, more choice than gold
Drove home, well-clenched, eternally will hold.
Oh! Dear-bought plea, dear Lord, what buy 't so dear?
What with Thy blood purchase Thy plea for me?
Take argument out of Thy grave t' appear
And plead my case with, me from guilt to free.
These maul both sin and devils, and amaze
Both saints and angels; wreathe their mouths with praise.
What shall I do, my Lord? What do, that I
May have Thee plead my case? I fee Thee will
With faith, repentance, and obediently
Thy service gainst Satanic sins fulfill.
I'll fight Thy fields while live I do, although
I should be hacked in pieces by Thy foe.
Make me Thy friend, Lord, be my surety: I
Will be Thy client, be my advocate:
My sins make Thine, Thy pleas make mine hereby.
Thou wilt me save, I will Thee celebrate.
Thou'lt kill my sins that cut my heart within:
And my rough feet shall Thy smooth praises sing.
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