Scripture Verse

There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24


John Newton (1725–1807)

Words: John New­ton, Ol­ney Hymns (Lon­don: W. Ol­iv­er, 1779), Book 1, num­ber 53. For an adap­ta­tion of this hymn, see One Is Kind Above All Oth­ers.

Music: All Saints Old Darm­stadt Ge­sang­buch, 1698 (🔊 pdf nwc).


One there is, above all oth­ers,
Well de­serves the name of friend;
His is love be­yond a bro­ther’s,
Costly, free, and knows no end:
They who once His kind­ness prove,
Find it ev­er­last­ing love!

Which of all our friends to save us,
Could or would have shed their blood?
But our Je­sus died to have us
Reconciled, in Him to God:
This was bound­less love in­deed!
Jesus is a friend in need.

Men, when raised to lof­ty sta­tions,
Often know their friends no more;
Slight and scorn their poor re­la­tions
Though they val­ued them be­fore.
But our Sav­ior al­ways owns
Those whom He re­deemed with groans.

When He lived on earth ab­as­èd,
Friend of sin­ners was His name;
Now, above all glo­ry rais­èd,
He re­joic­es in the same:
Still He calls them breth­ren, friends,
And to all their wants at­tends.

Could we bear from one ano­ther,
What He dai­ly bears from us?
Yet this glo­ri­ous friend and bro­ther,
Loves us though we treat Him thus:
Though for good we ren­der ill,
He ac­counts us breth­ren still.

O for grace our hearts to soft­en!
Teach us, Lord, at length to love;
We, alas! for­get too often,
What a friend we have above:
But when home our souls are brought,
We will love Thee as we ought.