Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PETER'S DENIAL OF HIS MASTER, by JOHN BYROM



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PETER'S DENIAL OF HIS MASTER, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Tho' all forsake thee, master, yet not I
Last Line: And of its height humility the base.
Subject(s): Humility; Virtue


"THO' all forsake thee, master, yet not I;
"I'll go to prison with thee, or to die,"
Said Peter—yet how soon did he deny!

A striking proof, that, even to good-will,
The help of grace is necessary still,
To save a soul from falling into ill.

His Master told him how the case would be,
But Peter could not see himself,—not he;
Till grace withdrew, that he might come to see.

Peter, so valiant on a selfish plan,
Quite frighted by a servant maid, began
To curse and swear, and did not know the Man.

'Twas thus that satan sifted him like wheat,
And made him think his courage was so great;
While JESUS pray'd that he might see the cheat.

High-minded in himself, he fell—how low,
The cock instructed him, foretold to crow:
His real self then Peter came to know.

He that would die with him, tho' all forsook,
Dissolv'd in tears, when JESUS gave a look;
And learn'd humility by love's rebuke.

Lesson for us is plain from Peter's case,
That real virtue is the work of grace,
And of its height humility the base.





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