God's Vengeance

written by John Hay

God's Vengeance

— John Hay

Saith the Lord, "Vengeance is mine;
I will repay," saith the Lord;
Ours be the anger divine,
Lit by the flash of his word.

How shall his vengeance be done?
How, when his purpose is clear?
Must he come down from his throne?
Hath he no instruments here?

Sleep not in imbecile trust
Waiting for God to begin,
While, growing strong in the dust,
Rests the bruised serpent of sin.

Right and Wrong, both cannot live
Death-grappled. Which shall we see?
Strike! only Justice can give
Safety to all that shall be.

Shame! to stand paltering thus,
Tricked by the balancing odds;
Strike! God is waiting for us!
Strike! for the vengeance is God's.

About the poet


John Hay

John Milton Hay was an American statesman, diplomat, author, journalist, and private secretary and assistant to Abraham Lincoln. Early Life Hay was born in Salem, Indiana, of Scottish ancestry, the third son of Dr. Charles Hay and Helen Leonard from Middleboro, Massachusetts, who had come to Salem to live with her sister. He was raised in Warsaw, Illinois, and educated first at the private school of the Reverend Stephen Childs, an Episcopal clergyman. In 1851 John went to an academy at Pittsfield in Pike County, where he met an older student, John G. Nicolay, with whom he would later work as private secretary to Abraham Lincoln. In 1852 John Hay went to the college at Springfield, and in 1855 was sent to Brown...

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