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A Living and a Dead Faith

The Lord receives His highest praise
From humble minds and hearts sincere;
While all the loud professor says
Offends the righteous Judge's ear.

To walk as children of the day,
To mark the precept's holy light,
To wage the warfare, watch, and pray,
Shew who are pleasing in His sight.

Not words alone it cost the Lord,
To purchase pardon for His own;
Nor will a soul by grace restored
Return the Saviour words alone.

With golden bells, the priestly vest,
And rich pomegranates border'd round,
The need of holiness express'd,
And call'd for fruit as well as sound.

Easy indeed it were to reach
A mansion in the courts above,
If swelling words and fluent speech
Might serve instead of faith and love.

But none shall gain the blissful place,
Or God's unclouded glory see,
Who talks of free and sovereign grace,
Unless that grace has made him free!

Olney Hymns, William Cowper, from Cowper's Poems, Sheldon & Company, New York