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Poem by John Newton


Father Forgive Them


Father, forgive (the Saviour said)
They know not what they do:
His heart was moved when thus he prayed
For me, my friends, and you.

He saw, that as the Jews abused
And crucified his flesh;
So he, by us, would be refused,
And crucified afresh.

Through love of sin, we long were prone
To act as Satan bid;
But now, with grief and shame we own,
We knew not what we did.

We knew not the desert of sin,
Nor whom we thus defied;
Nor where our guilty souls had been,
If Jesus had not died.

We knew not what a law we broke,
How holy, just and pure!
Nor what a God we durst provoke,
But thought ourselves secure.

But Jesus all our guilt foresaw,
And shed his precious blood
To satisfy the holy law,
And make our peace with God.

My sin, dear Saviour, made thee bleed,
Yet didst thou pray for me!
I knew not what I did, indeed,
When ignorant of thee. 



John Newton


John Newton's other poems:
  1. The Disciples at Sea
  2. The Hiding Place
  3. Zion, or the City of God
  4. Praise for the Incarnation
  5. But One Loaf


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