“Come Home, Father Calls”

“And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know” (Jn: 14.5)

     INTRO.:  A song which encourages the wayward person to take the way that he knows to be right is “Come Home, Father Calls.”  The text was written and the tune was composed both by David Norman Henderson (1925-1986).  It was copyrighted by Henderson in 1974.  Other songs by Henderson include “Light and Life” in Hymns for Worship Revised, “Discerning the Savior’s Death,” and two extra stanzas for “Hear Us, Heavenly Father.”  Among hymnbooks published by members of the Lord’s church during the twentieth century for use in churches of Christ, “Come Home, Father Calls” appeared in the 1978 Hymns of Praise edited by Reuel Lemmons; the 1980 Our Garden of Song edited by Gene C. Finley; and the 1980 Majestic Praise and the 1982 Songs by Songlight both edited by Henderson and Michael J. Schmidt.  Today it may be found in the 1977 Special Sacred Selections edited by Ellis J. Crum; and the 1999 Into Our Hands: Songs for the Church edited by Leland R. Fleming.

     The song refers to several factors that would motivate an erring child of God to come home.

I. Stanza 1 mentions the light
“The light in the window, so plainly you see, Come home, my brother, come home;
A feast is now ready, so happy you’ll be, Come home, my brother, come home.”
 A. Like a light shining through a window in a dark night, so the light of Jesus Christ shines in this dark world: Jn. 8:12
 B. Christ’s light shines on the feast that He has prepared for those who are His people: Lk. 14:116-17
 C. Those who accept His invitation by doing His will can be happy: Jn. 13:17

II. Stanza 2 mentions the care of brothers and sisters
“Your brothers and sisters now anxiously wait, Come home, my brother, come home;
Reunion is waiting inside the home gate, Come home, my brother, come home.”
 A. Brothers and sisters are anxiously waiting, hoping that the erring one might be restored: Gal. 6:1
 B. Reunion is waiting as they are ready to forgive the one who repents: 2 Cor. 2:6-11
 C. The “home gate” refers to the fact that the one who has strayed from the truth has been converted back to the way of righteousness: Jas. 5:19-20

III. Stanza 3 mentions the Father’s voice
“The Father’s sweet voice is still calling above, Come home, my brother, come home;
The house is now filled with His light and His love, Come home, my brother, come home.”
 A. The Father’s sweet voice calls people, whether lost in sin or having turned away from the truth, through the gospel: 2 Thess. 2:13-14
 B. His “house” of course refers to the church which He established as the home of the saved: Eph. 2:19
 C. It is in this relationship that people can benefit from His light and His love which come to us through Jesus Christ: Jn. 1:1-4

     CONCL.:  The chorus continues to exhort the unfaithful Christian to return to the Lord.
“Come home, Father calls, So soft His voice falls,
Come, home, Father calls, Come home, my brother, come home.”
While the words of the song seem addressed particularly to one who has been saved but gone back into sin, it could well serve also as a general invitation hymn to let all who are lost know that because God is the Father of their spirits, “Come Home, Father Calls.”


One thought on ““Come Home, Father Calls”

  1. Thank you for your review of this great song. I wish more people knew of this song, and all of Norman Henderson’s music. He was a true Christian gentleman and wrote songs that came from his heart and that everyone could sing.

    I would be glad to supplies copies of these songs to any who are interested.


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