“THE SCHOLAR’S PRAYER”

Handley Carr Glyn Moule (1841–1920) was the epitome of a pastor-scholar. He possessed a fervent evangelical piety. His father was an Anglican pastor. His mother modeled saintly prayer and “read to him from great books, instilling in him a lifelong quest for learning.” (See “Profile in Faith: Bishop Handley Moule.”)

Moule became a renowned academic at Cambridge University. He was known for his godly affection and was particularly sensitive to those struggling with doubt and despair. He was an ardent supporter of missions and hosted Hudson Tylor at the University.

He was appointed the first Head of Ridley Hall at Cambridge, established to preserve, and instill evangelical knowledge and piety. He wrote over sixty books, including biblical commentaries. He composed hymns and wrote two volumes of poetry.

In 1901, he was appointed the Bishop of Durham. He wrote the people of the Diocese:

I need and seek your prayers. Ask for me especially . . . a real effusion in me of that grace of the Spirit whereby Christ dwells in the heart by faith; a strength and wisdom not my own for my pastorate, and for the preaching of Christ Jesus the Lord; and a will wholly given over for labour and service at our Master’s feet.

In May 1920, he preached before the King and Queen at Windsor Castle. He died shortly after.

I am particularly taken with his meditation about scholarship. He expresses eloquently the mindset of one who desires to love God with the mind (Deut 6:4‒5)―as an academic:

Lord and Savior, true and kind,
Be the Master of my mind;
Bless, and guide, and strengthen still
All my powers of thought and will.

While I ply the scholar’s task,
Jesus Christ, be near, I ask;
Help the memory, clear the brain,
Knowledge still to seek and gain.

Here I train for life’s swift race;
Let me do it in Thy grace;
Here I arm me for life’s fight;
Let me do it in Thy might.

Thou hast made me mind and soul;
I for Thee would use the whole;
Thou hast died that I might live;
All my powers to Thee I give.

Striving, thinking, learning, still,
Let me follow thus Thy will,
Till my whole glad nature be
Trained for duty and for Thee.

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