John Mason Neale, Priest, Hymn Writer, 1866
I cry aloud to God;
I cry aloud to God and he will hear me.
In the day of my trouble I have sought the Lord;
by night my hand is stretched out and does not tire;
my soul refuses comfort.
I think upon God and I groan;
I ponder, and my spirit faints.
You will not let my eyelids close;
I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
I consider the days of old;
I remember the years long past;
I commune with my heart in the night;
my spirit searches for understanding.
Will the Lord cast us off for ever?
Will he no more show us his favour?
Has his loving mercy clean gone for ever?
Has his promise come to an end for evermore?
Has God forgotten to be gracious?
Has he shut up his compassion in displeasure?
1And I said, ‘My grief is this:
that the right hand of the Most High has lost its strength.’
I will remember the works of the Lord and call to mind your wonders of old time.
I will meditate on all your works and ponder your mighty deeds.
Your way, O God, is holy;
who is so great a god as our God?
You are the God who worked wonders and declared your power among the peoples.
With a mighty arm you redeemed your people, the children of Jacob and Joseph.
The waters saw you, O God;
the waters saw you and were afraid;
the depths also were troubled.
The clouds poured out water; the skies thundered;
your arrows flashed on every side;
The voice of your thunder was in the whirlwind;
your lightnings lit up the ground;
the earth trembled and shook.
Your way was in the sea, and your paths in the great waters,
but your footsteps were not known.
You led your people like sheep by the hand of Moses and Aaron.
My child, if you accept my words
and treasure up my commandments within you,
making your ear attentive to wisdom
and inclining your heart to understanding;
if you indeed cry out for insight,
and raise your voice for understanding;
if you seek it like silver,
and search for it as for hidden treasures—
then you will understand the fear of the Lord
and find the knowledge of God.
For the Lord gives wisdom;
from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;
he stores up sound wisdom for the upright;
he is a shield to those who walk blamelessly,
guarding the paths of justice
and preserving the way of his faithful ones.
Then you will understand righteousness and justice
and equity, every good path;
for wisdom will come into your heart,
and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
prudence will watch over you;
and understanding will guard you.
It will save you from the way of evil,
from those who speak perversely,
who forsake the paths of uprightness
to walk in the ways of darkness,
who rejoice in doing evil
and delight in the perverseness of evil;
those whose paths are crooked,
and who are devious in their ways.
You will be saved from the loose woman,
from the adulteress with her smooth words,
who forsakes the partner of her youth
and forgets her sacred covenant;
for her way leads down to death,
and her paths to the shades;
those who go to her never come back,
nor do they regain the paths of life.
Therefore walk in the way of the good,
and keep to the paths of the just.
For the upright will abide in the land,
and the innocent will remain in it;
but the wicked will be cut off from the land,
and the treacherous will be rooted out of it.
and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
Then he went home; and the crowd came together again, so that they could not even eat. When his family heard it, they went out to restrain him, for people were saying, ‘He has gone out of his mind.’ And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, ‘He has Beelzebul, and by the ruler of the demons he casts out demons.’ And he called them to him, and spoke to them in parables, ‘How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but his end has come. But no one can enter a strong man’s house and plunder his property without first tying up the strong man; then indeed the house can be plundered.
‘Truly I tell you, people will be forgiven for their sins and whatever blasphemies they utter; but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin’—for they had said, ‘He has an unclean spirit.’
Then his mother and his brothers came; and standing outside, they sent to him and called him. A crowd was sitting around him; and they said to him, ‘Your mother and your brothers and sisters are outside, asking for you.’ And he replied, ‘Who are my mother and my brothers?’ And looking at those who sat around him, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.’
Let your merciful ears, O Lord,
be open to the prayers of your humble servants;
and that they may obtain their petitions
make them to ask such things as shall please you;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.