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"I used to think that writing words was old-fashioned, so I sketched. I wrote words on the microphone." — Bono

U2 Bible References: Rattle And Hum


Rattle And Hum (1988)

The sixth album combined live recordings with new studio tunes, and also had a companion film of the same name. It was not received well by critics, but still produced several chart-topping singles with “Desire,” “Angel Of Harlem,” and “All I Want Is You.”

Each song may show up in one, two or three of the following categories:

Direct Quotes: lyrics that are clearly taken from specific verses in the Bible

Indirect References: lyrics that are likely referencing the Bible but without quoting specific verses

Possible Influences: lyrics that hint at biblical themes and influences, but have no overt connection

 


 

"Desire"

 

U2 lyric

For love or money

 

Inderict reference

1 Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. (NIV)

 

 


 

"Hawkmoon 269"

 

U2 lyric

Like tongues of flame

 

Possible influence

Acts 2:3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. (NIV)

 

 


 

"I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For"

 

U2 lyric

He'll be your shelter from the storm

 

Indirect reference

Isaiah 25:3-4 You have been a refuge for the poor,

    a refuge for the needy in their distress,

a shelter from the storm

    and a shade from the heat. (NIV)

 

Also see entry under The Joshua Tree album

 

 


 

"Silver And Gold"

 

U2 lyric

Silver and gold

 

Possible influence

This phrase can be found throughout scripture, quite often as a warning.

Deuteronomy 7:25 Do not covet the silver and gold on them, and do not take it for yourselves, or you will be ensnared by it, for it is detestable to the Lord your God. (NIV)

Deuteronomy 17:17 He [the king] must not accumulate large amounts of silver and gold.

Ezekiel 7:19 They will throw their silver into the streets, and their gold will be treated as a thing unclean. Their silver and gold will not be able to deliver them in the day of the Lord’s wrath.

Daniel 5:23 You praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood and stone, which cannot see or hear or understand. But you did not honor the God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways.

 

 


 

"Love Rescue Me"

 

U2 lyric

Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow / Yet I will fear no evil / I have cursed they rod and staff / They no longer comfort me

 

Direct quote

Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. (NASB)

 

 


 

"When Love Comes To Town"

 

U2 lyric

I was there when they crucified my Lord / I held the scabbard when the soldier drew his sword / I threw the dice when they pierced his side

 

Indirect reference

John 19:23-24 When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.” This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled that said, “They divided my clothes among them and cast lots for my garment.” (NIV)

John 19:34 One of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear… (NIV)