Vanity of the world


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.

‘Tis thus the world rewards the fools that live upon her treacherous smiles: she leads them blindfold by her rules, and ruins all whom she beguiles.

God knows the thousands who go down from pleasure into endless woe; and with a long despairing groan blaspheme the 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.

William Cowper

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