An Unlikely Duet:  Isaiah and Bob Dylan
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An Unlikely Duet: Isaiah and Bob Dylan

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This is a presentation I put together for a chapel service at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA. That week we were exploring Christian peace. On the last day, this presentation was......

This is a presentation I put together for a chapel service at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA. That week we were exploring Christian peace. On the last day, this presentation was where the sermon would normally go. It was a way to explore peace negatively. What does the *absence* of peace look like--well, sound like--in this case.

I paired selections of the Prophet Isaiah with the lyrics from Bob Dylan's famous song, "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall." Isaiah and Bob could say it much better than I ever could. I let them speak.

The last slide was generated by tagxedo.com. The text used to generate the tag cloud came from senior answers to an ordination exam question (Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.) that dealt with Christian peace.

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  • This is a presentation I put together for a chapel service at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA. That week we were exploring Christian peace. On the last day, this presentation was where the sermon would normally go. It was a way to explore peace negatively. What does the *absence* of peace look like--well, sound like--in this case.

    I paired selections of the Prophet Isaiah with the lyrics from Bob Dylan’s famous song, 'A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall.' Isaiah and Bob could say it much better than I ever could. I let them speak.

    The last slide was generated by tagxedo.com. The text used to generate the tag cloud came from senior answers to an ordination exam question (Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.) that dealt with Christian peace.
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  • 1. t
  • 2. Word and Song
    An Unlikely Duet
    Isaiah and…
    …Bob Dylan
  • 3. Word and Song
    Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son ?And where have you been my darling young one ?
  • 4. Word and Song
    For Jerusalem has stumbled and Judah has fallen, because their speech and their deeds are against the LORD, defying his glorious presence.
    Isaiah 3:8
    I've stumbled on the side of twelve misty mountains
  • 5. Word and Song
    Their roads they have made crooked; no one who walks in them knows peace.
    Isaiah 59:8
    I've walked and I've crawled on six crookedhighways
  • 6. Word and Song
    The remnant of the trees of his forest will be so few that a child can write them down.
    Isaiah 10:19
    I've stepped in the middle of seven sad forests
  • 7. Word and Song
    By my rebuke I dry up the sea, I make the rivers a desert; their fish stink for lack of water, and die of thirst.
    Isaiah 50:2
    I've been out in front of a dozen dead oceans
  • 8. Word and Song
    And they shall go out and look at the dead bodies of the people who have rebelled against me
    Isaiah 66:24
    I've been ten thousand miles in the mouth of a graveyard
  • 9. Word and Song
    And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, and it's a hardIt's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
  • 10. Word and Song
    Oh, what did you see, my blue eyed son ?And what did you see, my darling young one ?
  • 11. Word and Song
    Their bows will slaughter the young men; they will have no mercy on the fruit of the womb; their eyes will not pity children.
    Isaiah 13:18
    I saw a newborn baby with wild wolves all around it
  • 12. Word and Song
    The highways are deserted, travelers have quit the road.
    Isaiah 33:8
    I saw a highway of diamonds with nobody on it
  • 13. Word and Song
    Their slain shall be cast out, and the stench of their corpses shall rise; the mountains shall flow with their blood.
    Isaiah 34:3
    I saw a black branch with blood that kept drippin'
  • 14. Word and Song
    Why do we fast, but you do not see? Why humble ourselves, but you do not notice?" Look, you serve your own interest on your fast day, and oppress all your workers.
    Isaiah 58:3
    I saw a room full of men with their hammers a-bleedin'
  • 15. Word and Song
    In the year that king Uzziah died I saw…
    Isaiah 6:1
    I saw a white ladder all covered with water
  • 16. Word and Song
    Whom are you mocking? Against whom do you open your mouth wide and stick out your tongue?
    Isaiah 57:4
    I saw ten thousand talkers whose tongues were all broken
  • 17. Word and Song
    Hear, O heavens, and listen, O earth; for the LORD has spoken: I reared children and brought them up, but they have rebelled against me.
    Isaiah 1:2
    I saw guns and sharp swords in the hands of young children
  • 18. Word and Song
    And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, and it's a hardIt's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
  • 19. Word and Song
    And what did you hear, my blue-eyed son ?And what did you hear, my darling young one ?
  • 20. Word and Song
    You will be visited by the LORD of hosts with thunder and earthquake and great noise, with whirlwind and tempest, and the flame of a devouring fire.
    Isaiah 29:6
    I heard the sound of a thunder, it roared out a warnin'
  • 21. Word and Song
    For I am the LORD your God, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar -- the LORD of hosts is his name.
    Isaiah 51:15
    I heard the roar of a wave that could drown the whole world
  • 22. Word and Song
    Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people, and he stretched out his hand against them and struck them
    Isaiah 5:25
    I heard one hundred drummers whose hands were a-blazin'
  • 23. Word and Song
    Listen, and hear my voice; Pay attention, and hear my speech.
    Isaiah 28:23
    I heard ten thousand whisperin' and nobody listenin'
  • 24. Word and Song
    Therefore my people go into exile without knowledge; their nobles are dying of hunger, and their multitude is parched with thirst.
    Isaiah 5:13
    I heard one person starve, I heard many people laughin'
  • 25. Word and Song
    Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against his people…and their bodies were like refuse in the streets.
    Isaiah 5:25
    Heard the song of a poet who died in the gutter
  • 26. Word and Song
    Listen! the valiantcry in the streets; the envoys of peace weep bitterly.
    Isaiah 33:7
    Heard the sound of a clown who cried in the alley
  • 27. Word and Song
    And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hardAnd it's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
  • 28. Word and Song
    Oh, who did you meet my blue-eyed son ?Who did you meet, my darling young one ?
  • 29. Word and Song
    For before the child knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land before whose two kings you are in dread will be deserted.
    Isaiah 7:16
    I met a young child beside a dead pony
  • 30. Word and Song
    I held out my hands all day long to a rebellious people, whowalk in a way that is not good, following their own devices;
    Isaiah 65:2
    I met a white man who walked a black dog
  • 31. Word and Song
    Through the wrath of the LORD of hosts the land was burned, and the people became like fuel for the fire; no one spared another.
    Isaiah 9:19
    I met a young woman whose body was burning
  • 32. Word and Song
    I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.
    Isaiah 49:6
    I met a young girl, she gave me a rainbow
  • 33. Word and Song
    But he was wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the punishment that made us whole, and by his bruises we are healed.
    Isaiah 53:5
    I met one man who was wounded in love
  • 34. Word and Song
    On the day when the LORD binds up the injuries of his people, and heals the wounds inflicted by his blow.
    Isaiah 30:26
    I met another man who was wounded in hatred
  • 35. Word and Song
    And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hardAnd it's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
  • 36. Word and Song
    And what'll you do now, my blue-eyed son ?And what'll you do now my darling young one ?
  • 37. Word and Song
    It will serve as a pavilion, a shade by day from the heat, and a refuge and a shelter from the storm and rain.
    Isaiah 4:6
    I'm a-goin' back out 'fore the rain starts a-fallin'
  • 38. Word and Song
    The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness -- on them light has shined.
    Isaiah 9:2
    I'll walk to the depths of the deepest black forest
  • 39. Word and Song
    When you stretch out your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not listen
    Isaiah 1:15
    Where the people are a many and their hands are all empty
  • 40. Word and Song
    The LORD of hosts, is taking away from Jerusalem and from Judah support and staff -- all support of bread, and all support of water
    Isaiah 3:1
    Where the pellets of poison are flooding their waters
  • 41. Word and Song
    They will be gathered together like prisoners in a pit; they will be shut up in a prison, and after many days they will be punished.
    Isaiah 24:22
    Where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison
  • 42. Word and Song
    There is no one who calls on your name, or attempts to take hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us, and have deliveredus into the hand of our iniquity.
    Isaiah 64:7
    Where the executioner's face is always well hidden
  • 43. Word and Song
    But Zion said, "The LORD has forsaken me, my Lord has forgotten me."
    Isaiah 49:14
    Where hunger is ugly, where souls are forgotten
  • 44. Word and Song
    We wait for justice, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far from us.
    Isaiah 59:11
    Where black is the color, where none is the number
  • 45. Word and Song
    The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me; he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and release to the prisoners;
    Isaiah 61:1
    And I'll tell and think it and speak it and breathe it
  • 46. Word and Song
    Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings;lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings,lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, "Here is your God!"
    Isaiah 10:19
    And reflect it from the mountain so all souls can see it
  • 47. Word and Song
    If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand at all.
    Isaiah 7:9
    Then I'll stand on the ocean until I start sinkin'
  • 48. Word and Song
    Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise from the end of the earth!
    Isaiah 41:10
    But I'll know my song well before I start singin'
  • 49. Word and Song
    And it's a hard, it's a hard, it's a hard, and it's a hardIt's a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
  • 50. t