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W. Garrett Horder, comp. The Poets’ Bible: New Testament. 1895.

The Election of Matthias

George Wither (1588–1667)

WHEN one among the twelve there was

That did thy grace abuse

Thou leftst Him, Lord, and in his place

Didst just Matthias choose.

So if a traitor do remain

Within thy Church to-day,

To grant him true repentance deign,

Or cast him out we pray.

Tho’ horned like the lamb he show

Or sheeplike clad he be,

Let us his dragon language know,

And wolfish nature see;

Yea, cause the lot to fall on those,

The charge of thine to take

That shall their actions well dispose,

And conscience of them make.

Let us, moreover, mind his fall,

Whose room Matthias got,

So to believe and fear withal,

That we forsake thee not

For titles be they ne’er so high

Or great or sacred place,

Can no man’s person sanctify

Without thy special grace.