1 Jesus! what a friend for sinners!
Jesus! lover of my soul;
Friends may fail me, foes assail me,
He, my Savior, makes me whole.
Hallelujah! what a Savior!
Hallelujah! what a friend!
Saving, helping, keeping, loving,
He is with me to the end.
2 Jesus! what a strength in weakness!
Let me hide myself in Him;
Tempted, tried, and sometimes failing,
He, my strength, my vict'ry wins. [Refrain]
3 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. [Refrain]
4 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. [Refrain]
5 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. [Refrain]
Baptist Hymnal, 1991
|First Line:||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!|
|Title:||Our Great Savior|
|Author:||J. Wilbur Chapman (1910)|
|Refrain First Line:||Hallelujah! what a Savior!|
|Liturgical Use:||Opening Hymns|
J. Wilbur Chapman is the author of this text. According to Richard Stanislaw and Donald Hustad, it was written for the tune HYFRYDOL in 1910, and was first published with it in Alexander's Gospel Songs, No. 2 in the same year (Companion to The Worshiping Church, p. 137).
There are five stanzas and a refrain, and the text is very consistent. The first four stanzas of this hymn each focus on one aspect of Jesus – His love, strength, comfort, and guidance – elaborating on how He can help the believer through life's trials. The final stanza is a declaration of loyalty to Christ, and the refrain is an outburst of praise. Some writers have commented on the similarities between this hymn and Charles Wesley's “Jesus, Lover of My Soul,” including quotations in the second lines of Chapman's first (“Jesus! Lover of my soul”) and fourth stanzas (“While the tempest still is high”).
With very few exceptions, this text is always associated with the well-known Welsh tune HYFRYDOL, which was written in 1830 by Rowland H. Prichard, when he was twenty years old. Robert Harkness harmonized HYFRYDOL for this text in 1910.
This tune is one of the most popular of all hymn tunes, and occurs in most, if not all, modern hymnals, usually with multiple texts – up to six different hymns in a single hymnal! Features of the tune that lend to its popularity include its dependence on stepwise motion and its narrow vocal range (with one exception in the last phrase, the whole tune is within a fifth). The rhythmic patterns are simple, and the tune works well in a variety of moods and tempos.
This hymn of praise can be used at any time of year. It could be played as a prelude, perhaps be handbells (as in “Prelude on HYFRYDOL”) or organ. Although the text is always set to HYFRYDOL in hymnals, a choral arrangement of “Jesus, What a Friend for Sinners” is set to IRBY, another familiar hymn tune, which allows the congregation to hear the text differently.
Tiffany Shomsky, Hymnary.org
|Instances (1 - 20 of 20)||Title||First Line||Tune||Tune Key||Author||Meter||Scripture||Date||Subject||Source|
|Ambassador Hymnal: for Lutheran worship #513||Jesus, What a Friend for Sinners||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman, 1859-1918||87 87 D||1994||Adoration | ; Assurance | ; Encouragement | ; Fellowship | ; Healing | ; Inner Life | ; Jesus Christ | Savior; Lord's Supper | ; Love | Of God; Refuge | ; Testimony ||
|Baptist Hymnal 1991 #185||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners||Jesus! what a friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||188.8.131.52.with refrain||Matthew 9:10||1991|
|Baptist Hymnal 2008 #156||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners||Jesus! what a friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||184.108.40.206. with Chorus||2008||Declaration, Proclamation of Faith ||
|Celebrating Grace Hymnal #422||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners||Jesus! what a friend for sinners||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||220.127.116.11 D||2010||The Church at Worship | Proclamation; Jesus Christ-Friend | ; Jesus Christ-Redeemer | ; Proclamation ||
|Hymns of Faith #1||Our Great Savior||Jesus! What a Friend for sinners!||[Jesus! What a Friend for sinners!]||J. Wilbur Chapman||Luke 7:34; 2 Corinthians 12:9; Hebrews 13:5||1980||Christ | Comforter; Christ | Guide; Christ | Savior; Praise | of Christ|
|Hymns to the Living God #233||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners!||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||18.104.22.168.D||2017||Salvation ||
|Praise! Our Songs and Hymns #57||Out Great Savior||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||1979||Worship | The Son|
|Rejoice Hymns #241||Our Great Savior||Jesus! What a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman, 1859-1918||22.214.171.124. with Refrain||Titus 2:13||2011||Adoration and Praise | ; Jesus | Friend; Jesus Christ | ; Salvation | ; Testimony ||
|Renew! Songs & Hymns for Blended Worship #194||Our Great Savior||Jesus! What a Friend for sinners||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||126.96.36.199.D.||1995||Service of the Word | Songs of Assurance; The Service of the Word | Songs of Assurance; Praise and Thanksgiving | Songs to Remember the Work of the Son|
|Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #187||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||HOLY MANNA||1985|
|Sing Joyfully #63||Our Great Savior||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||[Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!]||J. Wilbur Chapman||1989||Adoration ||
|Soul-stirring Songs & Hymns (Rev. ed.) #161||Our Great Saviour||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||[Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!]||J. Wilbur Chapman||1989||Praise ||
|The Celebration Hymnal: songs and hymns for worship #17||Our Great Savior||Jesus! What a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||188.8.131.52.D.||Titus 2:13-14||1997||Praise the Lord | ; Adoration and Praise | Jesus Our Savior|
|The Christian Life Hymnal #248||Jesus, what a Friend for sinners!||Jesus, what a Friend for sinners!||Hyfrydol||2006|
|The Covenant Hymnal: a worshipbook #350||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners!||Jesus! what a friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman, 1859-1918||184.108.40.206.D.||Matthew 11:19; John 1:12; John 15:13-15; 2 Corinthians 2:9||1996||Friendship with God | ; Grace Through Faith | ; Guidance in Pilgrimage | ; Jesus Christ | Love; Jesus Christ | Presence; Descants ||
|The Cyber Hymnal #3286||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners||HYFRYDOL||John Wilbur Chapman||87.87 D|
|The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration #89||Our Great Savior||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||220.127.116.11.D.||1986||Christ | Friend; Jesus Our Savior : His Adoration and Praise | ; Salvation ||
|The Worshiping Church #89||Our Great Savior||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||18.104.22.168.D.||2 Corinthians 12:9-10; Philippians 4:13; Luke 7:34; Hebrews 13:5; Philippians 4||1990||Jesus Christ | Guide|
|Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #498||Jesus! What a Friend for Sinners!||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman||22.214.171.124.D.||Matthew 11:19; John 15:15||1990||Christ | Comforter; Christ | Friend; Christ | Praise of; Christ | Refuge|
|Worship and Rejoice #90||Our Great Savior||Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!||HYFRYDOL||J. Wilbur Chapman, 1859-1918||126.96.36.199.D.||Psalm 17:8; Luke 7:34; Hebrews 13:5; Psalm 143:9; Philippians 4:13; Psalm 32:7; 2 Corinthians 12:9-10; Psalm 27:5; Luke 8:24||2008|