The City of God

I will call down a blessing, 0 Zion, on the memory of thee;1 with all my might have I loved thee:2 ‘Blessed for evermore be the memory of thee!’

Great has been thy hope, 0 Zion, thy quiet, longing hope4 that salvation would come to thee;5 that men would be dwelling in thee till the end of time;6 that successions7 of godly men would be there for thine ornament; that men who now are yearning for the day of thy salvation, who find joy in thy manifold glory, would yet drink in that glory of thine like mother’s milk,8 and stroll through thy beautiful squares to the jingling of bells;9 that thou wouldst yet conjure up the godly devotion of thy prophets and find thy pride in the things wrought by thy saints-in the purging of all violence from within thee, with (all) falsehood and frowardness cut off; that thy children would make merry in thy midst, and thy friends who have allied themselves with thee.10

(How have they been hoping for thy salvation,11 and mourning over thee!)12

This hope of thine, 0 Zion, shall prove not a hope forlorn,13 nor shall this yearning of thine become a forgotten thing. Who ever perished, being righteous,14 or whom in his frowardness has God ever allowed to go free? Nay, there is never a man that is not brought to trial for the way he has trod, and none but receives his deserts for the deeds he has done. Nevertheless, 0 Zion, no foe ever compassed thee15 but was (in the end) cut down, and none has nursed hate for thee but was put to rout!16

A scent17 unto the nostrils is the fame of thee, 0 Zion, (diffused)18 over all the world! Over and over again will I call down a blessing upon the memory of thee: with all my heart19 invoke (this) benediction upon thee:

‘Mayest thou yet attain the triumph of righteousness world without end,20 and receive the blessings shed on men marked out for honor!21 Reap thou the harvest22 of that vision23 that once was spoken of thee, and may there ensue for thee what the prophets dreamed!’24

Grow high and wide, 0 Zion! Praise the Most High, thy Redeemer! When thou art brought to honor my soul will rejoice.25

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