Too Many, Lord, Abuse Thy Grace

Full Text

1. Too many, Lord, abuse Thy grace,
In this licentious day;
And while they boast they see Thy face,
They turn their own away.

2. Thy Book displays a gracious light
That can the blind restore;
But these are dazzled by the sight,
And blinded still the more.

3. The pardon, such presume upon,
They do not beg, but steal;
And when they plead it at Thy throne,
Oh! where’s the Spirit’s seal?

4. Was it for this, ye lawless tribe,
The dear Redeemer bled?
Is this the grace the saints imbibe
From Christ the living Head?

5. Ah, Lord, we know Thy chosen few
Are fed with heavenly fare;
But these, the wretched husks they chew
Proclaim them what they are.

6. The liberty our hearts implore
Is not to live in sin;
But still to wait at wisdom’s door,
Till mercy calls us in.

Author: William Cowper

Cowper, William, the poet. The leading events in the life of Cowper are: born in his father's rectory, Berkhampstead, Nov. 26, 1731; educated at Westminster; called to the Bar, 1754; madness, 1763; residence at Huntingdon, 1765; removal to Olney, 1768; to Weston, 1786; to East Dereham, 1795; death there, April 25,1800. The simple life of Cowper, marked chiefly by its innocent recreations and tender friendships, was in reality a tragedy. His mother, whom he commemorated in the exquisite "Lines on her picture," a vivid delineation of his childhood, written in his 60th year, died when he was six years old. At his first school he was profoundly wretched, but happier at Westminster; excelling at cricket and football, and numbering Warren Hastin… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Too many, Lord, abuse Thy grace
Title: Too Many, Lord, Abuse Thy Grace
Author: William Cowper (1779)
Source: Olney Hymns (London: W. Oliver, 1779)
Language: English
Notes: Al­ter­nate tunes: BANGOR, Will­iam Tan­s’ur, 1734; DALEHURST, Ar­thur Cott­man, 1874
Copyright: Public Domain



MARTYRDOM was originally an eighteenth-century Scottish folk melody used for the ballad "Helen of Kirkconnel." Hugh Wilson (b. Fenwick, Ayrshire, Scotland, c. 1766; d. Duntocher, Scotland, 1824) adapted MARTYRDOM into a hymn tune in duple meter around 1800. A triple-meter version of the tune was fir…

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