John Bowring

(1792-1872 / England)

Brotherly Love


The strong and sovran links that bind
The sympathizing mind with mind,
Were moulded in the courts above;
And kind design of Heavenly love,
For wondrous workings to be done,
By mingling many hearts in one.
In one! That holy unity
Which in God's purposes we see,
Doth all in one communion blend;
Love is their origin and end,
While the best fruits of love we bless,
In peace, and truth, and happiness.


If any thought could make us blest,
And put all doubts, all fears at rest,
'Tis this-that God, who all controls,
Shepherd and Saviour of our souls,
Has unto us the promise given,
And made us sons and heirs of heaven.
And while our eyes, around us glancing,
Streams, fountains, plains, and forests see
Unchanged, while man is still advancing,
Immutable his destiny.


And what his fathers saw of old,
He and his children will behold;
The seasons, in their wonted bounds
Still following their eternal rounds.
While man is marching-marching on,
Until his earthly race is done;
And other generations will
Follow his course-progressive still,
In that divine and upward path,
Which neither end nor limit hath.


'Tis in this forward march that man
To man is most allied, and can
So best promote that brotherhood
Which, being better understood,
Will most extend the field of good;
And be a mighty talisman,
Working its wondrous mission out,
In spite of weakness, fear, and doubt.

Submitted: Tuesday, September 21, 2010

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