The Two-Weight Wall Clock

Book Title: Het leerzaam huisraad : vertoond in vyftig konstige figuuren, met godlyke spreuken en stichtelyke verzen / door Jan Luiken

Author: Luiken, Jan, 1649-1712

Image Title: The Two-Weight Wall Clock

Scripture Reference:

Description: Just as human labor is required to pull the weights of the wall-clock to keep it running, so humans must regularly pull up the weights of their souls to keep them alive and active. In the same way, Paul urges Christians to always give themselves fully to the work of God, knowing that such labor is not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58). The Dutch artist and poet Jan Luiken (1649–1712), whose initials are at the lower right, was responsible for drawing and etching this emblem and wrote the accompanying poem.

Motto: Alive, through exertion.

If thou dost not pull up the heavy weight,
The Clock will no longer run,
And neither to the Ear, nor to the sight,
Provide its service for thy use.
O Man! Should thou forget in the Heart,
To pull up the Soul’s Weight,
It stops, like the Clock,
And doesn’t know to point or waken.
Then it is not alive but is as if dead,
And thou wilt waste thy fine hours,
Too shamefully, too badly and basely,
In matters that do not last Eternally.
Then when it Finally becomes so late,
That darkness begins to beckon,
And death is close,
One starts to think about the Weight:
Then it lies like Lead on the heart,
Then one pulls it up, then it comes to life,
Though life’s Day is already too far gone,
And the needed work has not been done.
Therefore, he who sees this in Others,
Should let the Weight of great matters,
Namely the Soul’s Salvation,
Make the Heart in God alive.

(Translation by Josephine V. Brown, with editorial assistance from William G. Stryker).

Click here for additional images available from this book.

Request a high-resolution file (fees apply)

Rights Statement: The online edition of this work in the public domain, i.e., not protected by copyright, has been produced by Pitts Theology Library, Emory University.
Rights Status: No Copyright - United States
Pitts Theology Library provides copyright information as a courtesy and makes no representation about copyright or other legal status of materials in the Digital Image Archive.