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First Line: Again, in the book of books, today
Last Line: "and he lives who once was dead."
Subject(s): Repentance; Homecoming; Forgiveness

AGAIN, in the Book of Books, to-day
I read of that Prodigal, far away
In the centuries agone,
Who took the portion that to him fell,
And went from friends and home to dwell
In a distant land alone.

And when his riotous living was done,
And his course of foolish pleasure run,
And a fearful famine rose,
He fain would have fed with the very swine,
And no man gave him bread nor wine,
For his friends were changed to foes.

And I thought, when at last his state he knew
What a little thing he had to do,
To win again his place:
Only the madness of sin to learn,
To come to himself, repent, and turn,
And seek his father's face.

Then I thought however vile we are,
Not one of us hath strayed so far
From the things that are good and pure.
But if to gain his home he tried,
He would find the portal open wide,
And find his welcome sure.

My fellow-sinners, though you dwell
In haunts where the feet take hold on hell,
Where the downward way is plain;
Think, who is waiting for you at home,
Repent, and come to yourself, and come
To your Father's house again!

Say, out of the depths of humility,
"I have lost the claim of a child on thee,
I would serve thee with the least!"
And He will a royal robe prepare,
He will call you son, and call you heir;
And seat you at the feast.

Yea, fellow-sinner, rise to-day,
And run till He meets you on the way,
Till you hear the glad words said, --
"Let joy through all the heavens resound,
For this, my son, who was lost is found,
And he lives who once was dead."

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