The Pharisee and the Publican

Unto God's House in olden day

Author: Valdimar Briem; Translator: Charles Venn Pilcher
Published in 1 hymnal

Full Text

Unto God's House in olden day
Two men together went to pray;
This for his right deeds sought reward,
That for mere mercy low implored.
When in Thine House to Thee I cry,
Lord, whether of the twain am I?

Ofttimes I kneel, a Pharisee
In sinful self-complacency,
Though nought I have, and all I owe:
Thy pardon, gracious Lord, bestow,
And grant that humbler mind which stayed
Far off in temple courts, and prayed.

I dare not lift mine eyes on high
To search the glories of the sky;
But, seated on Thy throne of light,
Thou, Lord, canst pierce this earthly night;
Thine eyes can count each contrite tear,
No sigh but finds Thy listening ear.

My breast I smite in sorrow sore,
And lo! I knock at Mercy's door:
Be each unlocked—my breast to Thee,
Thy Kingdom's boundless realm to me:
So make my heart, from sin washed pure,
Thy Kingdom, Lord, for evermore.

Author: Valdimar Briem

Born: Feb­ru­a­ry 1, 1848, Grund, Ice­land. Died: May 3, 1930, Stó­ri-Nú­pur, Ice­land. Briem at­tend­ed the The­o­lo­gic­al Sem­in­ary in Reyk­ja­vik, was or­dained in 1873, and in 1880 be­came pas­tor of the Stó­ri-Nú­pur par­ish, where he served for three de­cades. In 1909, he be­came vice-bi­shop of Skál­holt. The 1886 Ice­lan­dic hym­nal has 102 orig­in­al hymns by Briem, and 39 of his trans­la­tions. Lyrics: Hve dryalegur er Drott­inn (How Mar­vel­ous God’s Great­ness) Lord, Let Thy Spir­it --/www.hymntime.com/tch  Go to person page >

Translator: Charles Venn Pilcher

Pilcher, Charles Venn. (Oxford, June 4, 1879--July 4, 1961, Sydney, Australia). Anglican. Grandnephew of Charlotte Elliott. Hertford College, Oxford, B.A., 1902; M.A., 1905; B.D., 1909; D.D., 1921. Curacies at Birmingham, 1903-1905; St. James, Toronto, 1910-1916; taught theology at Auckland Castle, England, 1905-1906, and at Wycliffe College, Toronto, 1916-1936. Elected coadjutor bishop of Sydney, Australia, at the instance of a former Wycliffe colleague, Archbishop Mowll. He composed hymn tunes and other music, and long played bass clarinet in the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Also, he translated and published much devotional material from Iceland, notably Iceland Christian Classics (1950). These side interests, like his hymn writing, merely… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Unto God's House in olden day
Title: The Pharisee and the Publican
Author: Valdimar Briem
Translator: Charles Venn Pilcher
Meter: 8.8.8.8.8.8
Language: English



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