Change of Hart

I called at the grave of Joseph Hart this summer, at London's Bunhill Fields. He was a preacher and hymnwriter, who once wrote an anti-Christian tract called The Unreasonableness of Religion, and tried to dissuade John Wesley from his gospel preaching. Hart himself was then converted to Christ, his tombstone stating:

Joseph Hart was by the free and sovereign grace and Spirit of God raised up from the depths of sin, and delivered from the bonds of mere profession and self-righteousness, and led to rest entirely for salvation in the finished atonement and perfect obedience of Christ.

1 Awake, ye sleeping souls, awake,

And hear the God of Israel speak:

His word is faithful, firm, and true:

Sinners, attend! he speaks to you.


2 Mercy and vengeance in me dwell;

One lifts to heaven, one casts to hell;

My favour’s more than life, my wrath

Will burn beyond the bounds of death.


3 Short is the space, and death must come;

And, after death, the day of doom;

When quick and dead the Judge shall call,

And deal their due deserts to all.


4 Fix'd in their everlasting state,

Could men repent, ’twere then too late;

Justice has bolted mercy’s door,

And God’s long-suffering is no more.


5 ’Tis now the gospel message sent

Commands repentance; now repent:

Wisely be warned to refuge run,

Obey the Father; kiss the Son.


6 In Christ receive the gift of God,

Complete redemption through his blood:

Mercy triumphant: sin forgiven;

And everlasting life in heaven.