Sir Edward Denny, Bart

 •  5 min. read  •  grade level: 7
//////////////////////////////////////////////////// P. 156 ILLUSTRATION ////////////////////////////////////////////////////
SIR EDWARD DENNY was born October 2, 1796, at Tralee Castle, County Kerry, Ireland, and in 1831 he succeeded his father as fourth baronet.
A writer says, "Sir Edward was brought under conviction of sin by reading Father Clement. He then confessed the Lord,, and began ministering to the poor and to the saints in a most unassuming manner. He was much loved and esteemed in London, and was connected mostly with the Park Walk Assembly.”
His book, Hymns and Poems, was published in 1848, when the author was in his 53rd year. Though a man of means and culture, he was not eager to "rush into print," as so many writers of inferior verses are apt to do. He was a devout student of prophecy, and it gave occasion for many of his hymns, in which the joy kindled by the hope of the Lord's coming, with its blessed results to the church and to the earth, seems to leap from his heart in beautiful stanzas, as in the following:
"Bride of the Lamb, awake! awake!
Why sleep for sorrow now?
The hope of glory, Christ, is thine,—
A child of glory thou.
Thy spirit, through the lonely night,
From earthly joy apart,
Hath sigh'd for one that's far away,
The Bridegroom of thy heart.
But lo, the night is waning fast,
The breaking morn is near;
And Jesus comes, with voice of love,
Thy drooping heart to cheer.
He comes—for, oh! His yearning heart
No more can bear delay—
To scenes of full unmingled joy,
To call His bride away.
This earth, the scene of all His woe,—
A homeless wild to thee,—
Full soon upon His heav'nly throne
Its rightful King shall see.
Thou, too, shalt reign—He will not wear
His crown of joy alone!
And earth His royal Bride shall see
Beside Him on the throne.
Then weep no more! 'tis all thine own—
His crown, His joy divine,
And sweeter far than all beside,
He, He Himself, is thine.”
Large charts were also devised by him, which were published at his own expense. One, "A Prophetical Stream of Time," shows a large amount of study and patient labor in setting forth the ways of God with man through "The Ages," with much detail as to each.
A volume of his, "Hymns and Poems," has been published in which are found "How sweet the hour, O Lord, to Thee;" "What grace, O Lord, and beauty shine;" " 'Tis finished, all, our souls to win;'' "Sweet feast of love divine;" etc., etc.
He "fell asleep" at the advanced age of 93 in June, 1889 (the exact date of the present writer's conversion). Commenting on his departure, a writer in the Leeds Mercury of June 19, 1889, made the following remarks: "Nearly the whole town of Tralee belonged to him. He had an opportunity, twenty years ago, when his leases fell in, of raising his rents to figures that in some cases would not have been considered extortionate had they been quadrupled. He decided, however, to continue the old rates. '1 he result was that he was almost alone in escaping any reduction at the hands of the Land Commission. So far as he was himself concerned, a little money went a long way, but he gave liberally to poor relatives and to religious work in connection with 'the Brethren.'
Living in a quiet way in a cottage at Islington, he devoted much of his time to the study of prophecy.
The following is from the pen of one from whose account most of the information in this paper is taken.
“It was the writer's privilege to meet with Sir Edward at his residence in Bolton Gardens; and in his study there to spend some time in his company. Aged, yet sweetly communicative, it was a valued time of communion as our minds reverted to scenes of the past, and the Lord's gracious dealings with His people. In order to test our brother's memory, I remember repeating one of his hymns, with a slight change of words, which was detected at once, showing that there was little falling off in that loving and bright intellect, though ninety years were creeping on the aged baronet. On parting he gave me his photo, so seldom given, which is here reproduced.”
It is a pity that not one of his beautiful hymns appears in the present editions of "Hymns for the Little Flock." Sir Edward was averse to any change in his hymns, and would consent to no alterations being made in them. One can hardly blame him for this, for among our best known and much used hymns, there is scarcely one in any collection that stands now as originally written, and some have been very greatly altered. Editors and writers frequently disagree, so differences between the poet and the compiler are neither new nor strange.
As a fitting close to this brief account we give an extract from the introduction to his "Hymns and Poems." Remarking on the classic concerning Love—1 Cor. 13.—Sir Edward Denny says, "Love being 'the greatest of these,' seeing that the blessed God is Himself essentially Love, our hope surely should not come short of that day when He, 'whom having not seen we love,' will reveal Himself to our hearts in all His attractions—when our powers of loving will be fully developed. And this will not be till the whole family meet in the house of their Father; till the Bride, the Lamb's wife, is actually enthroned with her Lord.
Come, Lord Jesus!'