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The Sea of Galilee Mission of the Free Church of Scotland
Chapter II. The Sea of Galilee

[THE following hymn was written by Mr. M'Cheyne at the Sea of Galilee on July 16, 1839, when on the Mission of Inquiry to the Jews. Of the day on which that hymn was written, Dr. Andrew Bonar says: "The day we spent at the lake—at the very water-side—was ever memorable; it was so peculiarly sweet! We felt an indescribable interest even in lifting a shell from the shore of a sea where Jesus had so often walked. It was here that two of the beautiful hymns in the `Songs of Zion' were suggested to him—the one was `How pleasant to me,' etc.; the other was 'To yonder side.' "]

"how pleasant to me is thy deep blue wave,
Thou Sea of Galilee
For the glorious One who came to save
Hath often stood by thee.

"Fair are the lakes in the land I love,
Where pine and heather grow;
But thou Bast loveliness far above
What Nature can bestow.

"It is not that the wild gazelle
Comes down to drink thy tide,
But IIe that was pierced to save from hell
Oft wandered by thy side.

"It is not that the fig-tree grows,
And palms, in thy soft air,
But that Sharon's fair and bleeding Rose
Once spread its fragrance there.

"Graceful around thee the mountains meet,
Thou calm reposing sea;
But ab ! far more, the beautiful feet
Of Jesus walked o'er thee.

"These days are past—Bethsaida, where?
Chorazin, where art thou?
his tent the wild Arab pitches there,
The wild reeds shade thy brow.

"Tell me, ye mouldering fragments, tell,
Was the Saviour's city here?
Lifted to heaven, has it sunk to hell,
With none to shed a tear?

"Ah! would my flock from thee might learn
How days of grace will flee;
how all an offered Christ who spurn,
Shall mourn at last, like thee.

"And was it beside this very sea,
The new-risen Saviour said
Three times to Simon, 'Lovest thou Me?
My lambs and sheep, then, feed'

"O Saviour I one to God's right hand!
Yet the same Saviour still,
Graved on Thy heart is this lovely strand
And every fragrant hill.

"Oh! give me, Lord, by this sacred wave,
Threefold Thy love divine,
That I may feed, till I find my grave,
Thy flock—both Thine and mine."

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