Bob Dylan probably did more to spread the message of Christ than Billy Graham, Billy Sunday, or any other famous evangelist.
Want me to prove it?
Quick: Quote any sermon you’ve ever heard.
Okay, ever hear this?
How many times must a man look up
Before he can see the sky?
Yes, ’n’ how many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry?
Yes, ’n’ how many deaths will it take till he knows
That too many people have died?
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind
We got so much in common
We strive for the same old ends
And I just can’t wait
Wait for us to become friends
I feel a change coming on
And the fourth part of the day is already gone
Old lady judges watch people in pairs
Limited in sex, they dare
To push fake morals, insult and stare
While money doesn’t talk, it swears
Obscenity, who really cares
Propaganda, all is phony
Once upon a time you dressed so fine
You threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn’t you?
People’d call, say, “Beware doll, you’re bound to fall”
You thought they were all kiddin’ you
You used to laugh about
Everybody that was hangin’ out
Now you don’t talk so loud
Now you don’t seem so proud
About having to be scrounging for your next meal
How does it feel
How does it feel
To be without a home
Like a complete unknown
Like a rolling stone?
The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is rapidly fadin’
And the first one now will later be last
For the times they are a-changin’
Maggie comes fleet foot
Face full of black soot
Talkin’ that the heat put
Plants in the bed but
The phone’s tapped anyway
Maggie says that many say
They must bust in early May
Orders from the D.A.
Look out kid
Don’t matter what you did
Walk on your tiptoes
Don’t try “No-Doz”
Better stay away from those
That carry around a fire hose
Keep a clean nose
Watch the plain clothes
You don’t need a weatherman
To know which way the wind blows
Through many dark hour
I’ve been thinkin’ about this
That Jesus Christ
Was betrayed by a kiss
But I can’t think for you
You’ll have to decide
Whether Judas Iscariot
Had God on his side
Oh God said to Abraham, “Kill me a son”
Abe says, “Man, you must be puttin’ me on”
God say, “No.” Abe say, “What?”
God say, “You can do what you want Abe, but
The next time you see me comin’ you better run”
Well Abe says, “Where do you want this killin’ done?”
God says, “Out on Highway 61”
Oh, the leaves began to fallin’
And the seas began to part
And the people that confronted him were many
And he was told but these few words
Which opened up his heart
“If ye cannot bring good news, then don’t bring any”
You might be a rock ’n’ roll addict prancing on the stage
You might have drugs at your command, women in a cage
You may be a businessman or some high-degree thief
They may call you Doctor or they may call you Chief
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You’re gonna have to serve somebody
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody
Bob Dylan probably did more to spread the message of Christ than any evangelist even before he formally became a Christian and to people who would otherwise be resistant to the gospel.
All of his music, all of his lyrics were informed by a strong Biblical point of view, and it was clearly evident even before he formally announced he was a Christian that Robert Allen Zimmerman had spent a lot of time reading and meditating and thinking upon the message of Jesus Christ.
His songs stick in everybody’s head. They’re not the watered down papulum of Contemporary Christian Music, they are not the bland platitudes of Christian publishing, they’re not the soulless / gutless crap that represents most Christian attempts at pop culture.
They’re sincere. They’re raw. They’re from the heart. They’re searching. They’re yearning.
They’re not afraid of asking questions.
And they tell you the answers are something you have to seek for yourself.
And that you will not be excused for failing to search.
People take Dylan’s songs into their hearts, they echo through their lives. They sing them day in and day out.
Every sermon is dead and buried as soon as the congregation walks out the door.
The gospel — if the congregation was fortunate enough to have a pastor who could impart some of it through his plethora of words — lives.
Not in memory verses, not in concordances, not in apologetics, not even on the printed page, but in the heart, in the mind, in the soul.
They just gave Bob Dylan a Nobel Prize for literature.
You don’t get that for empty threats and pointless propaganda.
“Blowin’ In The Wind” © 1962 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1990 by Special Rider Music
“I Feel A Change Comin’ On” © 2009 by Special Rider Music and Ice-Nine Publishing
“It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)” © 1965 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1993 by Special Rider Music
“Like A Rolling Stone” © 1965 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1993 by Special Rider Music
“The Times They Are A-Changin’” © 1963, 1964 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1991, 1992 by Special Rider Music
“Subterranean Homesick Blues” © 1965 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1993 by Special Rider Music
“With God On Our Side” © 1963 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1991 by Special Rider Music
“Highway 61 Revisited” © 1965 by Warner Bros. Inc.; renewed 1993 by Special Rider Music
“The Wicked Messenger” © 1968 by Dwarf Music; renewed 1996 by Dwarf Music
“Gotta Serve Somebody” © 1979 by Special Rider Music