John Pierpont

(1785-1866 / the United States)

Hymns For Dedication Iv - Poem by John Pierpont

To God, to God alone,
This temple have we reared;
To God, who holds a throne
Unshaken and unshared.
Sole King of Heaven,
Who 'st heard our prayers
And blessed our cares,
To thee 't is given.

O thou, whose bounty fills
This plain so rich and wide,
And makes its guardian hills
Rejoice, on every side,
With shady tree
And growing grain;
This decent fane
We give to thee.

Thou, who hast ever stooped
To load our land with good,
Whose hand this vale hath scooped,
And rolleth down its flood
To the far sea,-
This house we raise,
And now, with praise,
Devote to thee.

To all, O God of love,
Dost thou thy footsteps show;
The white and blue above,
The green and gold below,
The grove, the breeze,
The morning's beam,
The star, the stream,-
They 're seen in these.

Where now, in goodly show,
The domes of art are piled,
Thy paths, not long ago,
Dropped fatness on a wild.
O let us see
Thy goings here,
Where now we rear
A house for thee.

Nursed by the blessed dew,
And light of Bethlehem's star,
A vine on Calvary grew,
And cast its shade afar.
A storm went by,-
One blooming bough,
Torn off, buds now
Beneath our sky.

O, let no drought or blight
This plant of thine come nigh;
But may the dew, all night,
Upon its branches lie;
Till towards this vine
All flesh shall press,
And taste and bless
Its fruit and wine.

Because, O Lord, thy grace
Hath visited the West,
And given our hearts a place
Of worship and of rest;
Old age and youth,
The weak, the strong,
Shall praise in song
Thy grace and truth.

The grace and truth that came
By thine Anointed Son,
Here let such lips proclaim
As fire hath fallen upon,
From out the high
And holy place
Where dwells in grace
Thy Deity.

To thee, to thee alone,
This temple have we reared:
To thee,-before whose throne,
Unshaken and unshared,
Sole King of Heaven,
With thanks we bow,-
This temple now
For praise is given.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 15, 2010

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