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ARGUMENT.

Prayer and thanksgiving of the Author.-Solemn dedication of his labours.-Supplication for the Divine Influence.-The Bard resumes.— The Judgment-day-what it really was.-The redeemed and the reprobate still standing as described in Book IX.-Universal calm of Earth waiting her doom.-The trumpet sounded by Michael.-Gathering of the heavenly hosts, and arrival around the New Jerusalem of the inhabitants of other regions of space.-Description of these multitudes of immortals. All wait silent and adoring. —Address of the Almighty from the cloud. The destiny of man pronounced concluded.—The ways of Heaven unfolded and vindicated.-Address of the Father to the Eternal Son.-The Son of God comes to Judgment.-How the righteous behold His coming.—The Judge on the Great White Throne.-The heavenly hosts ranged around.-The Book opened.-Men read their names rejoicing or despairing.-Sentence pronounced.-The profound stillness of universal life and space.-The wrath of God.-The seven last Thunders.-The reprobate driven beyond the Gulf.-Second Death and the undying Worm.-The wall of fire closed round the wicked.-Eternity of punishments.-The destruction of the globe.-Imagery of the final conflagration pointed out.-The Judge approves the righteous.-Hymn to God and the Lamb.-The Eternal Union of the Church with Christ. -The finished work of the Messiah.-Conclusion.

THE COURSE OF TIME.

BOOK X.

OD of my fathers! holy, just, and good!
My God! my Father! my unfailing hope!
Jehovah! let the incense of my praise,
Accepted, burn before thy mercy-seat,
And in thy presence burn, both day and night.
Maker! Preserver! my Redeemer, God!

Whom have I in the heavens but Thee alone?

On earth, but Thee, whom should I praise, whom love?
For Thou hast brought me hitherto, upheld

By thy omnipotence; and from thy grace-
Unbought, unmerited, though not unsought-
The wells of thy salvation, hast refreshed
My spirit, watering it, at morn and even;
And by thy Spirit, which Thou freely giv'st
To whom Thou wilt, hast led my venturous song
Over the vale and mountain-track, the light
And shade of man; into the burning deep
Descending now, and now circling the mount
Where highest sits Divinity enthroned;

Rolling along the tide of fluent thought,
The tide of moral, natural, divine;

Gazing on past and present; and again,
On rapid pinion borne, outstripping Time,
In long excursion, wandering through the groves
Unfading, and the endless avenues

That shade the landscape of Eternity;

And talking there with holy angels met,
And future men, in glorious vision seen!

Nor unrewarded have I watched at night,

And heard the drowsy sound of neighbouring sleep.
New thought, new imagery, new scenes of bliss
And glory, unrehearsed by mortal tongue,
Which, unrevealed, I trembling turned and left,
Bursting at once upon my ravished eye,
With joy unspeakable have filled my soul,
And made my cup run over with delight;
Though in my face the blasts of adverse winds,
While boldly circumnavigating Man
(Winds seeming adverse, though perhaps not so),
Have beat severely-disregarded beat,

When I behind me heard the voice of God,
And His propitious Spirit, say, Fear not!

God of my fathers! ever-present God!
This offering more inspire, sustain, accept;
Highest, if numbers answer to the theme;
Best answering, if thy Spirit dictate most.
Jehovah! breathe upon my soul; my heart
Enlarge; my faith increase; increase my hope;
My thoughts exalt; my fancy sanctify,
And all my passions, that I near thy throne
May venture, unreproved; and sing the day,
Which none unholy ought to name-the Day

Of Judgment! greatest day past or to come!
Day which-deny me what thou wilt, deny
Me home, or friend, or honourable name—
Thy mercy grant, I thoroughly prepared,
With comely garment of redeeming love,
May meet, and have my Judge for Advocate.

Come, gracious Influence, Breath of the Lord! And touch me trembling, as thou touched the man Greatly beloved, when he in vision saw

By Ulai's stream, the Ancient sit; and talked
With Gabriel, to his prayer swiftly sent,
At evening sacrifice. Hold my right hand,
Almighty! hear me, for I ask through Him,
Whom Thou hast heard, whom Thou wilt always hear,
Thy Son, our interceding great High Priest!
Reveal the future; let the years to come

Pass by; and open my ear to hear the harp,—
The prophet harp whose wisdom I repeat,
Interpreting the voice of distant song-
Which thus again resumes the lofty verse;
Loftiest, if I interpret faithfully

The holy numbers which my spirit hears.

Thus came the day, the Harp again began,
The day that many thought should never come,
That all the wicked wished should never come,
That all the righteous had expected long;
Day greatly feared, and yet too little feared

By him who feared it most; day laughed at much
By the profane, the trembling day of all
Who laughed; day when all shadows passed,
dreams;

When substance, when reality commenced;

Last day of lying, final day of all
Deceit, all knavery, all quackish phrase;
Ender of all disputing, of all mirth
Ungodly, of all loud and boasting speech;
Judge of all judgments, Judge of every judge,
Adjuster of all causes, rights, and wrongs;
Day oft appealed to, and appealed to oft

By those who saw its dawn with saddest heart:
Day most magnificent in Fancy's range,

Whence she returned, confounded, trembling, pale,
With overmuch of glory faint and blind;
Day, most important held, prepared for most,
By every rational, wise, and holy man:
Day of eternal gain for worldly loss;
Day of eternal loss for worldly gain;
Great day of terror, vengeance, woe, despair;
Revealer of all secrets, thoughts, desires;
Rein-trying, heart-investigating day,
That stood between Eternity and Time,
Reviewed all past, determined all to come,
And bound all destinies for evermore!
Believing day of unbelief! Great day!
That set in proper light the affairs of earth,

And justified the government Divine!

Great day! what can we more? what should we more?

Great triumph-day of God's Incarnate Son!

Great day of glory to the Almighty God!

Day whence the everlasting years begin

Their date, new era in eternity,

And oft referred to in the song of heaven!

Thus stood the apostate, thus the ransomed stood;

Those held by justice fast, and these by love,
Reading the fiery scutcheonry, that blazed

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