There is little need to recount Scripture or to specify chapter and verse to substantiate the proposition that Slow Train is a Christian album. And while there may be inquiries about the surety of his commitment, Slow Train is testimony to Bob Dylan's completion into the Christian faith.

Slow Train Coming is more than a testimony to Bob Dylan's completion into the Christian faith: it is a call into the bars, into the streets, into the world, to repentance, to "the man on the cross … crucified for you. Believe in his power, that's about all you've got to do!" Bob, Jerry Wexler, and Barry Beckett have taken outreach and made it happen in the raw musical vernacular of the roadhouse.

Bob Dylan's credentials are impeccable. Who continually encouraged us to find the truth for ourselves, "Not to follow leaders" (not even himself,.in '"It Ain't Me, Babe")? Who suspected the status quo. the cool, the compromising ("Don't know which is worse, doin' your own thing or just bein' cool")? Who warned the complacent that the "times are a'changing," or cried for the realization of a mutual hope "blowin' in the wind"? Who painfully reexamined his talents and asked, "For whom does this prosper?" so that we might be strengthened in our own hope/thirst for righteousness'?

Not only as edification for the body, "Gotta Serve Somebody" must touch any listener just because it identifies so many of us: our jobs, our traits, our likes, our dislikes. How clearly in this context do we begin to see the single choice available at the bottom line: you cannot serve two masters.

As the blind lead the blind, the political activist ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.

Our digital archives are a work in progress. Let us know if corrections need to be made.