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A minor


Friday, April 21, 2006

"If It Be Your Will"
I recently got together with a couple old college roommates from my first semester in Idaho. Aaron lives here but we seldom get together, and Matt lives in Maryland. Toward the end of the Maker's Mark, we started talking about one of our old favorites, Leonard Cohen, which led to listening to Cohen Live (or singing to it, in Matt's case). The fact that a profligate Jew beats contemporary Christian music hands-down in terms of writing biblically and poetically rich songs makes me wonder if the Israel-now-equals-the-Christian-church equation might be just a wee bit simplistic. (I'm glad I'm not completely alone here; among my friends, at least Tim Gallant advocates a fuller, more complex position in his paper, "All Israel: the saved in Romans 11.26.") In any case, it doesn't get much better than this song:

If it be your will
that I speak no more
and my voice be still
as it was before,
I will speak no more—
I shall abide until
I am spoken for,
if it be your will.

If it be your will,
if a voice be true,
from this broken hill
I will sing to you.
From this broken hill
all your praises they shall ring,
if it be your will
to let me sing.

If it be your will,
if there is a choice,
let the rivers fill,
let the hills rejoice,
let your mercy spill
on all these burning hearts in hell,
if it be your will
to make us well.

And draw us near
and bind us tight,
all your children here,
in their rags of light—
in our rags of light,
all dressed to kill,
and end this night,
if it be your will,
if it be your will.
© 1988 Leonard Cohen / Stranger Music, Inc. (BMI)

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