Thursday, September 20, 2012

Isaiah 55 lyric

I've been asked to write a song on Isaiah 55. It's a good exercise, but I feel like I'm not very good at sticking with one chapter. With this one, I keep feeling pulled to John's gospel. The woman at the well, John 6 and John 10 keep suggesting themselves. But here's my attempt. It's a first draft, so I'm not worried yet about fiddly stuff, but would you feel ripped off if you asked for an Isaiah 55 song and you got this content?

Working Title

Come all who thirst
Come to the waters
Come rich and poor
Grace will provide
Why spend your life
Seeking what can’t satisfy?
There’s milk and wine, there’s living bread
So come and feast on Christ

Come all and hear
(of) life in abundance
Incline your ear
Listen and live
God’s word is sown
(It) yields a crop in every land
There’s joy and hope, eternal life
So come and feast on Christ

Come seek the Lord
While he is near you
Turn from your sin
Into the light
Oh burdened heart
(God) will forgive, he will redeem
His pardon's sure, his ways are right
So come and feast on Christ.

sar 2012


  1. Personally, I think it's a horrible exercise! Isaiah 55 gets more attention from songwriters than it warrants, on its's such a disparate collection of themes that I can't figure why people keep whacking themselves with the challenge!

    Having unloaded that, I think you've done a good job of reading Isaiah 55 Christianly while sticking to the chapter. No, I wouldn't feel ripped off.

    But - you resisted the eschatology verse! That's not like you ;-) Verses 12 and 13 looked ripe for the picking. 'We will feast with Christ' would make a nice final line...

    Any reason for shifting the order of your verses relative to the source material? Just to make the appeal stronger? (it succeeds in that, I think)

    But I think we need to ask about audience. Isaiah is writing to a bunch of 'backsliders'. Who will this song be addressed to? Does that affect how we apply Is 55? ie less of an appeal to convert, more of an appeal to live it out?

  2. I've written one myself on this same chapter. Don't link to it. It'll put you off and it's not that great. I think this version has too much of an "interior" feel, like a person at prayer in their room. Isaiah's passage is really vivid and provides a tumble of imagery, most of which is very earthy - the plentiful food and drink, the transformation from fruitless to fruitful labour, the rain and snow, the mountains and trees singing and clapping along with us. It's like a song you would sing while out working in the fields with your heart bursting at the plentiful harvest.