Monday, March 14, 2016

He's a Lover

            He’s been walking in us all
            He’s been seeing through our eyes
            He’s been battered by our falls
            He’s been gladdened by our rise
            and there’s been no body here
            that He hasn’t been inside
            He’s no secret to our ears
            and He’s got nothing to hide

            And He’s a lover,
            He’s a lover, Babe
            Don’t run for cover
            Don’t go hiding now, girl
            He’s a lover
            He’s a lover

            Were you walking in the street?
            Was it you I saw last night
            looking like you couldn’t sleep
            and your heart done up too tight
            with your painted eyes and face
            holding back the tide of fear?
            Did you finally find a place
            where someone paid to drink your tears?

            But He’s a lover,
            He’s a lover, Babe
            Go, run for cover
            Go, run to Him now, girl
            He’s a lover
            He’s a lover

            Where you look it can’t be found
            Man, the books just fill the sills
            of your mind, you can’t get down
            from your bed of selfish will
            For the Spirit’s just a clown
            who’s been dressed up for the kill
            In His letters you may drown,
            but He’s waiting for you still

            ‘Cause He’s a lover,
            He’s a lover, Man
            Don’t blow your cover
            Don’t go crazy now, oh no
            He’s a lover
            He’s a lover

            He’s been counting out our days
            He’s been filling in our names
            He’s not satisfied with praise
            we offer up between our games
            He’s so tired that we must sleep
            but He offers us a light
            as He walks the lonely street
            He’s been walking every night

            ‘Cause He’s a lover,
            He’s a lover, Babe
            Throw off the cover
            Get up and open the door, girl
            He’s a lover
            He’s a lover

— Romanós

Commentary on this song by the author

      What is the meaning of that recurring description of God as mónos philánthropos, ‘only lover of mankind,’ that appears in so many prayers and hymns?

      In this song I explored this idea of the ‘One Who Alone Loves Us’ in four metaphors:

      The first stanza and refrain allude to Adam and Eve, particularly to Eve, on whom was heaped the blame for their common transgression. (Genesis 3:8-13)
      The second stanza and refrain refer to the woman caught in the act of adultery. The crowd wanted to stone her. Jesus, however, released her without harming her. He was her protector.
(John 8:1-11)
      The third stanza and refrain echo Christ’s indictment of the lawyers and pharisees, though He still loved them and held out the offer of His love. (Several passages in the synoptics and John)     
      The fourth stanza and refrain recounts the all-knowing forebearance of God, the forgiveness Jesus had for the sleepers in Gethsemane, and closes with a paraphrase of a scene from the Song of Solomon. (Song of Solomon 5:2-8)

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