When Jesus Came to Jericho

Representative Text

1 When Jesus came to Jericho,
a crowd was waiting there.
The rabbi’s miracles and deeds
were now known everywhere.
A tax collector climbed a tree
to see above the crowd.
The rabbi locked him in his gaze,
then spoke his name aloud.

2 Zacchaeus, high up in the tree,
looked down with great surprise,
and saw his clear reflection in
the rabbi’s knowing eyes.
He saw himself possessed by greed,
dishonest to the core,
despised by friend and foe alike
for always wanting more.

3 Ashamed, Zacchaeus hung his head,
and would have turned away,
except that Jesus said, “My friend,
We must have lunch today!”
Amazed, Zacchaeus raised his eyes
to Jesus’ kindly face,
and saw the love that welcomed him,
redeeming him with grace.

4 From that day on, Zacchaeus vowed
to change and make amends
for all that he had stolen from
his enemies and friends.
Whenever someone was in need,
he gladly did his part,
and all who knew him marveled at
his warm and giving heart.

5 Christ Jesus, come, call us by name,
and hold us in your gaze,
that we may also see and mourn
the error of our ways,
then joyfully receive your grace,
enabling us to see
and grow into the persons God
envisioned us to be.

Source: Faith That Lets Us Sing: fifty new hymns and short worship songs #86

Author: Mary Nelson Keithahn

Mary Nelson Keithahn, a retired United Church of Christ ordained pastor and church educator, has been a curriculum writer-editor, journalist, and lyricist for musical dramas and anthems. She still works out of her home in Rapid City, South Dakota, as a free-lance writer. In 2016 she published Elfie: Adventures on the Midwest Frontier, a chapter book for children, and Embracing the Light: Reflectioins on God’s Holy Word, a collection of meditations for individual or small group use. Augsburg Fortress also published Sing the Stories of God’s NEW People, the third in a trilogy of Bible story-based collections of songs for young children, written with her longtime colleague, John D. Horman. The two have written over a hundred hymns togethe… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: When Jesus came to Jericho
Title: When Jesus Came to Jericho
Author: Mary Nelson Keithahn (2004)
Language: English
Copyright: © 2004 Mary Nelson Keithahn


Instances (1 - 1 of 1)

Faith That Lets Us Sing #86

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