The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Carol II. Jesus, The Saviour

When From Our Father's House Astray

For Christmas

Words: Anonymous.

Music: Relfe
Old Psalm Tune

Source: Christmas Carols, or Sacred Songs, Suited to the Festival of our Lord's Nativity (London: John William Parker, 1833), pp. 22-25.



" She shall bring forth a Son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus : for he shall save his people from their sins. " Matthew i 21.

When from our Father's house astray, 
From Eden's bliss we chose to roam : 
We heard a voice from Eden say,
" Return, ye wanderers, to your home!"

When, lost to joy, the vale of death
We trod 'mid pain and deepening gloom,
Like vernal airs, a genial breath
Breathed on us health's reviving bloom.

When in the stocks our feet were set, 
" Rise, captives, rise, from bondage free,"
Our ear a lark-like warble met,
" Rise, captives, rise, and follow me !"

When numbed we lay to feeling dead, 
Or scared with visions of affright, 
" Wake, sleepers," morn's sweet herald said, 
" Arise and God shall give you light!"

O'erspent with sorrow, whelmed in shame,
We found no comfort to our soul: 
" 'Tis mine," a voice of comfort came,
" 'Tis mine to heal you, be ye whole!

" 'Tis mine the broken heart to heal,
The bruised spirit to restore; 
Light on the sightless eye to deal,
Refreshment to the outcast poor."

Whose voice, more soft than Eden's gales,
Bids us to Eden's groves repair ?
Whose breath, when sinking nature fails, 
Is felt more sweet than vernal air ?

Who can arouse the dead from sleep ?
Who can the prisoner's bands unbind ? 
The wounded heart in comfort steep,
Refresh the poor, restore the blind ?

Hail, Thou, on this auspicious day 
Who earnest our human form to wear; 
Content our ransom's price to pay, 
Content our weight of sin to bear !

Of heavenly love the dayspring clear, 
Thy beams we hail this joyful tide ; 
Which rose our darkling hearts to cheer, 
Our feet the way of peace to guide !

Sheet Music from Sheet Music from Christmas Carols, or Sacred Songs, Suited to the Festival of our Lord's Nativity (London: John William Parker, 1833), pp pp. 23-25.

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