Tuesday Hymns: “Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners!”

J. Wilbur Chapman (1859-1918) was a Presbyterian pastor and evangelist during the latter days of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th. He had a world-wide preaching ministry and was infamous (at least in my eyes) for hiring Billy Sunday as his advance man, which gave him his start in evangelism. He was a man who had faced sorrow (buried two wives and an infant son) and those experiences provided the evidence needed for him to write:

Jesus! what a help in sorrow!
While the billows o’er me roll,
Even when my heart is breaking,
He, my comfort, helps my soul.

Our Tuesday Hymn for this week is Chapman’s most well known hymn, Jesus! What a Fried for Sinners! which was published in 1910. It is sung to the familiar tune, HYFRYDOL.

Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!
Jesus! Lover of my soul;
Friends may fail me, foes assail me,
He, my Saviour, makes me whole.

Refrain

Hallelujah! what a Saviour!
Hallelujah, what a Friend!
Saving, helping, keeping, loving,
He is with me to the end.

Jesus! what a strength in weakness!
Let me hide myself in him;
Tempted, tried, and sometimes failing,
He, my strength, my vict’ry wins.

Jesus! what a help in sorrow!
While the billows o’er me roll,
Even when my heart is breaking,
He, my comfort, helps my soul.

Jesus! what a guide and keeper!
While the tempest still is high,
Storms about me, night o’ertakes me,
He, my pilot, hears my cry.

Jesus! I do now receive him,
More than all in him I find,
He hath granted me forgiveness,
I am his, and he is mine.

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