(adapted from Winslow's, "The Earnest
Expectation of the Renewed Creature")
"We are merely moving shadows, and
all our busy rushing, ends in nothing."
Man's origin, the earth;
his birth, degenerate;
his rank, a bauble;
his wealth, but glittering dust;
his pomp, an empty pageant;
his beauty, a fading flower;
his pursuits, an infant's play;
his honors, vexations of spirit;
his joys, fleeting as a cloud;
his life, transient as a vapor;
his final home, a grave.
Truly, "vanity" is inscribed in legible
characters on each 'created' good.
"Surely man in his best estate is altogether vanity."
And what is his
religion but vanity?
His native holiness, a vain conceit;
his natural light, Egyptian darkness;
his human wisdom, egregious folly;
his religions forms, and rites, and duties,
"a vain show in the flesh;"
his most gorgeous righteousness, filthy rags.