I know that Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah is about as sacred ground as you get on secular grounds, here it comes… however, Mr. Cohen can’t sing (in fine company with other singer/song-writers such as Bob Dylan) and it’s really quite a depressing song, to wit:
Maybe there’s a God above
But all I’ve ever learned from love
Was how to shoot at someone who outdrew you
It’s not a cry you can hear at night
It’s not somebody who has seen the light
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah
Now it’s not like this assessment would be a big surprise to Mr. Cohen. I’m sorry that he’s given up hope in the King born a baby so that He may die for us on the cross. Love isn’t broken; it was broken by us and for us only to be reborn through the Holy Spirit. Given this lack of hope and the originally bad singing, I’ve been surprised how much people love this song.
Yet. Yet, there is this driving rhythm in a haunting song that reminds us that this world is broken and fallen; that love here is never returned perfectly by other people nor do we love perfectly. We are haunted by the truth that a positive outlook rings hollow and untrue. So that’s where Hallelujah hits us. It rings true to the pain of our lives.
Yet. Yet we are unable to give up hope. There is something more; this cold and broken love is not the final word. Christ was broken for us that we might live and love through him.
Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace,
according to your word;
for my eyes have seen your salvation
that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and for glory to your people Israel. Luke 2:29-32
That is where the Cloverton band comes in – we are reminded of the true hope of Israel in Christ in Hallelujah Christmas. They have taken Cohen’s song and taken it past the pain to true hope. Thanks Cloverton.
Merry Christmas. Joyeux Noël. Frohe Weihnachten Feliz Navidad
We have hope in the Light to enlighten the nations.