Saturday, April 23, 2011

Parley Pratt's Poem on the Restoration

The following brief poem on the Restoration comes from Parley P. Pratt (1807-1857; served on the LDS Quorum of the Twelve Apostles from 1835-1857) in his A Voice of Warning and Instruction to All People (New York: W. Sanford, 1837), 121:
Ye gloomy scenes! far hence, intrude no more.
Sublimer themes, invite the muse to soar
In loftier strains, while scenes, both strange and new,
Burst on the sight, and open to the view.

Lo! from the opening heavens, in bright array,
An Angel comes, to earth he bends his way:
Reveals to man, in power, as at the first,
The fulness of the Gospel long since lost.

See earth obedient, from its bosom yield,
The sacred truth, it faithfully concealed.
The wise confounded startle at the sight,
The proud and haughty tremble with affright.

The hireling priests, against the truth engage,
While hell beneath, stands trembling, filled with rage;
False are their hopes, and all their struggles vain,
Their craft must fall, and with it, all their gain;
The deaf must hear, the meek their joy increase;
The poor be glad, and their oppressions cease.
Later on in the same work (168-171), Parley Pratt presents an even longer poem of his about the eschatological consummation of all things in the resurrection; he skillfully includes both biblical figures and Book of Mormon figures at the marriage supper of the Lamb:
Hail, glorious day, by prophets long foretold;
And sought by holy men, from days of old;
Who found it not, but readily confessed,
As pilgrims here, they sought a promised rest;
Hear Abel groan, as first he yields his breath,
And is succeeded by his brother Seth;
He dies in faith, to wait till Christ appears;
To rise and reign with him a thousand years.

Hear Enoch too, the wonderous scene foretell,
While future glories did his bosom swell;
The vail was rent, while wonders strange and new
Before him rose, and opened to his view.

Long, long he heard the earth in anguish mourn;
Saw heaven weep, while oft his bowels yearn'd;
While all eternity, with pain beheld
The scenes of sorrow which his bosom swell'd:
He saw the Lamb of Calvary expire,
While rocks were rent, and cities wrapped in fire;
He saw him burst the tomb, and mount on high,
Enthroned in glory, 'mid the upper sky.

Obtained the promise, he would come again
To earth, in triumph with his saints to reign,
His soul was glad, with joy he tuned the lyre;
And sung the glorious reign, of king Messiah.

Hosanna to the Lamb, that shall be slain;
All hail the day, when Zion comes again;
Out of the earth the truth in power He sends,
While righteousness from heaven, shall descend,
And these shall sweep the earth, as with a flood
To gather out the purchase of his blood;
Unto the Zion which he shall prepare;
And Enoch with his city, meet them there;
When all the ransom'd saints shall join the lay,
And shout hosanna in eternal day.

Wide o'er the earth, the Saviour's name extend;
And peace o'er all prevail, from end to end.

Thus Enoch sang, while all the heavenly choir;
Join'd in hosanna, to the king Messiah.
Noah too by faith beheld the scene afar;
And as a type, he did the ark prepare.

Condemned the world, by water overthrown,
While to his view, the light triumphant shone
He gazed with joy on all the glorious scene,
But mourn'd the darkness, that should roll between.

Abram with joy, beheld the day of rest;
When in his seed, all nations should be bless'd,
And gladly wandered, as a pilgrim here;
And fell asleep, to wait till Christ appear -
In sure and certain hope, to rise and reign
In Canaan's land, a right he had obtained.

Isaac and Jacob, had the glorious view,
Rejoiced in death, and so did Joseph too;
While patient Job, in pain look'd far away,
Saw his Redeemer in the latter day,
Stand on the earth, while he himself should rise,
And in the flesh, behold him with his eyes.

Moses and Joshua, Samuel and Isaiah,
Did each in turn, this solemn truth declare;
While David tuned the lyre in joyful lays;
Spake of Messiah's reign, and sung his praise.

Ezekiel, Daniel, Joel, Zacheriah,
And Malachi, have spoken of Messiah;
When he should set his feet on earth again,
Burn up the proud, and o'er the nations reign.

Jesus and Peter, John and James, and Paul,
The time would fail me here, to mention all;
Who wrapt in vision clear, in turn foretold,
The day of wonders I would fain unfold.

Lehi, Nephi, Alma and Mosiah,
Abinedi, who once rejoiced in fire;
Mormon, Moroni and Ether, testified;
For this they lived, and in this faith they died;
And all the saints of God, in all the earth,
Down from Old Adam, to the latest birth;
And all the vast creations, which extend,
Through boundless space till man can find no end,
And all the heavenly host, around the throne,
Shall sound his praise in reverential tone;
Millions unnumber'd, at his feet shall fall,
Hail him as king, and crown him Lord of all.

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