CHRIST RECEIVETH SINFUL MEN
Erdmann Neumeister, 1671–1756
Translated by Emma F. Bevan, 1827–1909
This man welcomes sinners and eats with them. (Luke 15:2)
Did Christ o’er sinners weep, and shall our cheeks be dry?
Let floods of penitential grief burst forth from every eye.
The thrilling news of the gospel is that Jesus welcomes the nobodies of life and transforms them into somebodies. The pages of church history are filled with examples of people whose lives have been dramatically changed from vile sinners to spiritual saints.
Divine love is never forced on anyone. God created man with a free will, free even to reject Christ’s provision for salvation. Our heavenly Father does not want to send to hell people who reject His Son—it is a place that was originally intended for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). It cost God the cross and death of Jesus before He could forgive our sin and still remain a holy God. Although costly to God, salvation is a free gift to all who will receive it.
“Christ Receiveth Sinful Men” was originally written in 1718 by a Lutheran minister, Erdmann Neumeister, pastor of a church in Hamburg, Germany, for 41 years. He became widely known as an eloquent, forceful preacher as well as the author of approximately 650 hymns. More than a century later, an English lady hymnist, Emma Frances Bevan, translated this and a number of other German texts into the English language. Still today, this hymn reminds us clearly that Christ welcomes any repentant sinner who responds to His gracious invitation for forgiveness and a new life.
Sinners Jesus will receive! Sound this word of grace to all who the heav’nly pathway leave, all who linger, all who fall.
Come, and He will give you rest; trust Him for His word is plain; He will take the sinfulest; Christ receiveth sinful men.
Now my heart condemns me not; pure before the law I stand; He who cleansed me from all spot satisfied its last demand.
Christ receiveth sinful men, even me with all my sin; purged from ev’ry spot and stain, heav’n with Him I enter in.
Chorus: Sing it o’er and o’er again: Christ receiveth sinful men; make the message clear and plain: Christ receiveth sinful men.
For Today: Isaiah 55:7; Matthew 11:28, 29; Luke 15:1–7; Ephesians 1:6–8
Thank God again for His free gift of salvation that is extended to everyone. There are many today who believe that they must somehow make themselves better before they can be accepted by God. Determine to share this truth with such a one.
Osbeck, K. W.
- Let the wicked forsake his ways, and the unrighteous his own imaginations, and return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he is very ready to forgive. Isaiah 55:7
- Come unto me, all ye that are weary and laden, and I will ease you. Take my yoke on you, and learn of me that I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. Matthew 11:28-29
- Then resorted unto him all the Publicans and sinners, to hear him. Therefore the Pharisees and Scribes murmured, saying, He receiveth sinners, and eateth with them. Then spake he this parable to them, saying, What man of you having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders with joy. And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders with joy. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbors, saying unto them, Rejoice with me: for I have found my sheep which was lost. I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven for one sinner that converteth, more than for ninety and nine just men, which need none amendment of life. Luke 15:1–7
- To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherewith he hath made us freely accepted in his beloved. By whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins, according to his rich grace: Whereby he hath been abundant toward us in all wisdom and understanding. Ephesians 1:6–8