Another pre-publication excerpt: this is from the preface to Get Up Off Your Knees: Preaching the U2 Catalog by Eugene Peterson (author of The Message.)

"Metaphor... makes me a participant in creating the meaning and entering into the action of [a] word. I can no longer understand the word by looking it up in the dictionary for it is no longer just itself; it is alive and moving, inviting me to participate in the meaning. When prophets use metaphor we get involved with God whether we want to or not, sometimes whether we know it or not.

"When metaphor is banished and language is bullied into serving as mere information and definition, as happens so often in our computerized culture and cultural religion, the life goes out of the language. It also goes out of us. When this reduction happens in relation to God and all that pertains to God, we end up sitting around having study and discussion groups in religious museums. If we are lucky, a prophet, one of the descendants of Hosea or Jonah or Habakkuk, shows up and with the simple expedient of a metaphor, said or sung, drags us outside into the open air where all the stuff we are studying is alive and moving and colliding with us. For many these days, it is U2 that shows up."

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