U2: Singing Praise Songs Again

by Feb 26, 2009

U2 - No Line on the HorizonWe’ve waited almost four years since the last U2 album. I couldn’t wait another four days for the official release, so I jumped when I heard that their new album, No Line on the Horizon, is online at U2’s MySpace page.

All the tracks sound great, but the one that especially caught my attention was Magnificent, an unambiguous praise song. I can’t remember such a clear declaration of faith from these guys since the days of “40.” I think I was in elementary school then.

Sure, U2’s been playing around with subtle double-meanings for a while (replace every “she” or “her” with “God” on Achtung Baby, and suddenly the album sounds like a David Crowder worship CD), but this is something very different.

Bono has taken deep theological ideas and weaved them into a song that millions of people will listen to. In the second verse alone he explores our creation in God’s image, God’s irresistible grace drawing us to praise him, and our justification brought by Christ’s scars on the cross:

I was born
I was born to sing for you
I didn’t have a choice but to lift you up
And sing whatever song you wanted me to
I give you back my voice
From the womb my first cry, it was a joyful noise…

Only love, only love can leave such a mark
But only love, only love can heal such a scar

Justified till we die, you and I will magnify
The Magnificent