Contrast between the fortunes of Israel and Egypt; the instrument of punishment to the Egyptians became the instrument of benefit to Israel.
And in trackless regions they pitched their tents.
And there was given them water out of the flinty rock,
And healing of their thirst out of the hard stone.
By these they in their need were benefited.
To punish the decree for the slaying of babes,
They learned how the ungodly were tormented, being judged with wrath:
But those, as a stern king, condemning them, thou didst search out.
And a groaning at the remembrance of things past.
They felt the presence of the Lord;
And marvelled at the events that had come to pass,
Having thirsted in another manner than the righteous.
Appropriateness of retribution shown to be the purpose of God.
Wherein they were led astray to worship irrational reptiles and wretched vermin,
Thou didst send upon them a multitude of irrational creatures for vengeance;
That created the world out of formless matter,
Lacked not means to send upon them a multitude of bears, or fierce lions,
Either breathing out a blast of fiery breath,
Or blowing forth from their nostrils noisome smoke,
Or flashing dreadful sparkles from their eyes;
But to destroy them even by the terror of their sight.
Being pursued by Justice, and scattered abroad by the breath of thy power.
But by measure and number and weight thou didst order all things.
God, though almighty, is full of mercy and compassion.
And the might of thine arm who shall withstand?
And as a drop of dew that at morning cometh down upon the earth.
And thou overlookest the sins of men to the end they may repent.
And abhorrest none of the things which thou didst make;
For never wouldst thou have formed anything if thou didst hate it.
Or that which was not called by thee, how would it have been preserved?
O Sovereign Lord, thou lover of souls;