This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them. Luke 15:2
Jesus, friend of sinners, hast Thou love for me?
Son of God the Holy, Man of mystery,
Lover of the children, teacher of the wise,
Let me read the secret in Thy friendly eyes.
Jesus, friend of sinners, Thou hast read my heart,
Searching its recesses with a lover’s art;
Naught have I withholden, nothing hid from Thee—
Waste, or want, or folly—things that should not be.
Jesus, friend of sinners, Thou hast touched my soul,
Not with scornful pity, not with beggar’s dole;
Thou hast not despisèd men that faint or fall,
Tenderer than brother, for Thou knowest all.
Jesus, friend of sinners, bid me follow Thee,
O’er the rugged highways, e’en to Calvary;
Let me know Thy Spirit, sweet and strong and wise;
I would win the friendship in Thy loving eyes.
Jesus, friend of sinners, hold me by Thy side,
Till the shadows deepen tow’rd the eventide;
To Thy strength and beauty I would ever bend,
Till, in dawn eternal, friend shall be as friend!