Their fortitude and wisdom were a flame *
Celestial, though they knew not whence it came,
Derived from the same source of light and grace,
That guides the Christian in his swifter race;
Their judge was conscience, and her rule their law:
That rule, pursued with reverence and with awe,
Led them, however faltering, faint, and slow,
From what they knew, to what they wished to know.
But let not him that shares a brighter day,
Traduce the splendour of a noon-tide ray,
Prefer the twilight of a darker time,
And deem bis base stupidity no crime;
The wretch, who slights the bounty of the skies,
And sinks, while favoured with the means to rise,
Shall find them rated at their full amount,
The good he scorned all carried to account.
Marshalling all his terrors as he came,
Thunder, and earthquake, and devouring flame,
From Sinai's top Jehovah gave the law,
Life for obedience, death for every flaw.. .
When the great Sovereign would his will express,
He gives a perfect rule; what can he less?