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Vanity of the World

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

God gives His mercies to be spent;Your hoard will do your soul no good;Gold is a blessing only lent,Repaid by giving others food.

The world's esteem is but a bribe,To buy their peace you sell your own;The slave of a vainglorious tribe,Who hate you while they make you known.

The joy that vain amusements give,Oh! sad conclusion that it brings!The honey of a crowded hive,Defended by a thousand stings.

&ls;Tis thus the world rewards the foolsThat live upon her treacherous smiles:She leads them blindfold by her rules,And ruins all whom she beguiles.

God knows the thousands who go downFrom pleasure into endless woe;And with a long despairing groanBlaspheme their Maker as they go.

Oh fearful thought! be timely wise;Delight but in a Saviour's charms,And God shall take you to the skies,Embraced in everlasting arms.