Precious Jerusalem: A Song’s Story Analysis

Precious Jerusalem is a song writtn by the German Metal Band Blind Guardian. It is a special song, due to its thematic referring to Jesus’ Christ ministry. The band was formed in 1984. They had a great influence for the metal scene at Germany during that time. Their most famous songs are referring to Tolkien’s Silmarilion. You can surely expect story analysis for those in the future. Enjoy!

You can find the lyrics here.

That time at Jerusalem

The song speaks for Jerusalem, as a reference to the people of Israel during the time of Christ. The main protagonist, the one who “sings” is Jesus, who has 1. come out from the desert after 40 days and the temptetion of Satan or 2. he is into the city of Jerusalem, just before his Passion (like at the Gospel of Matthew) or 3. he is still doing his ministry or at last 4. all the above. My own hypothesis is, that the song covers all the aspects of the life of Jesus, and his point of view as Jerusalem and its people, the chosen nation of God, rejects him as the Son of God.

Let’s see the lyrics. The song starts with the words “no doubt, doubt” and continues with the one who sings, Jesus, finding out who he is. Although contradicting to the traditional view that Christ always knew who he was, we can say that Jesus speaks for the desert and his temptations. He is now ready to go and preach. “Words will heal it“, because Jesus is the Word of God. “Love will conquer them“, because the core of Jesus’ message is love. “The hearts of the hopeless, the almighty is still alive” as a reminder that Jesus came for salvation, for the hopeless people of Israel, that were under the suppression of the Roman rule.

The dawning of the S(o)(u)n

The next two stranzas point out when these words (of the song) were said. “Risin’ up from the heart of the desert, risin’ up for Jerusalem“. Jesus finally moves out from he desert. It’s time to go to Jerusalem, to Israel, and teach what his Father dictated. “Building up old Jerusalem“. Jesus is not unfamiliar with Jerusalem. He is the Son of God, who came down to earth to save the soul of man, to save old Jerusalem, who has suffered terrible fates during her long history.

The next though, is a bit intriguing for me. “I’ve gone beyond, but there’s no life“. What does this actually mean? If we continue we will realize that Jesus is talking about Eden. “There is no healing rain in Eden, the empty barren wasted paradise“. He talks about the emptiness of Eden, the wasted paradise. No life is there, no one leaves at paradise since the Fall of Man. But is Jesus talking about the real Eden which is indeed beyond, is he talking about the situation of men here on earth or both? The one who wrote the song is an agnostic, so propably he is trying to portraite the image of men during the time of Jesus.

Although we could give the hypothesis that Eden, is empty and wasted, a paradise with no one to live there. This reflects the situation an earth too, and due to that fact that humans got away from God. But now Jesus has come and the dawning of the Son is here. I really like the use of the words Son and dawning, because son is heared as sun, because Jesus is supposed to be the light of the world.

Refrain

There is a verse at the Gospel of Matthew that says:

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!” (Mt. 23,37)

In parallel the refrain of the song is:

I turn to you oh my precious Jerusalem
Deny your prophets their passion and treat them like fools
I turn to you oh my precious Jerusalem
Deny my love but you can change fate

The message of both verses are the same. Jerusalem was supposed to be a holy city, ever since king David conquered the city. But since then and during the times of the Old Testament (or the Hebrew Bible), too much evil passed from the city. Evil kings, deniers of God and his Commandments, kings that believed in other gods. But God always wanted for Jerusalem to be safe and well, so He sent his prophets, to help people return to the true way. But Israel killed all of the prophets and every prophet that died, died in Jerusalem. Jerusalem dinied her prophets, and treated them like fools and finally killed them, because they were saying the truth about the bad situation of humanity.

Refrain No1: You can’t change fate

You can’t change fate. Jerusalem was destroyed at 70 A.D. by Titus, son of the Roman Emperor Vespasian. The verse “you can’t change fate” probably refers to the verse of Matthew 27, 25: “And then the people answered His blood be on us and on our children!”. The fact is that indeed Israel paid with their blood the unreasonable death of Jesus. Because these words indeed turned against them and Jerusalem was destroyed and her people were scattered. Two historical facts are that first, the Gospel of Metthew propably was written before 70 A.D (maybe around 60 A.D., before Apostle Paul’s death) and the nation of Israel was created nearly 2000 years later, at 1948.

Ending the suffering

Can’t stand the pain, mo more grief and misery“. Many times in the Gospels we can see Jesus perform miracles not for personal reasons, but because he could not stand the pain of people (for example the ressurection of the child at Nain). The whole point of the ministry of Jesus was to give back the missing paradise, to open the communication with God and the people between them, through love and care for others. “Father stop it now, we must stop it now“. This verse shows the tension and the willingness of Jesus to end the suffering from the face of the world.

But the fact is it’s not that simple, to stop pain. “You really think you are half way up, I would not mind if you were right […] I’d rather say you are half way down, so I am going to help you, if I can“. People often think over themselfs and that was the quarel Jesus had with the Pharisees. They though too much of themselves and did not care about others, but this was just wrong. Wrong as an attitude for a man to have, but also wrong because it was a lie. The Pharisses were targetting on people’s weakness, in order to present themselves as authentic teachers, but this just made people more miserable and willing to find the truth of life somewhere else.

The next stranza refers again to the exit of Jesus from the desert, which is the main them as it seems of the song. His preparation at the wilderness is done and now he is ready for his ministry.

Refrain No2: You can’t change truth

The second refrain comes as a completion on what wa written before. People found the truth they were seeking at the face and the words of Jesus. Jesus Christ said that He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. For a simole man to proclaim these accusations was and still is blasphemy for the people of Israel. But for the side of Christ and the Christians later became doctrine, the one and only truth. But this was created due to the fact that people found refuge to Jesus. His comforting words for the kingdom of Heaven, but also and his strict teachings about how a true ethical and good person should live, inspired people. This truth no one can change, that this new lifestyle is what will change people.

I can read between the lines

Rise up and follow me, cause I will bring the light“. This is a “scandalous” for some contradiction. And that is because the one that brings the light is Lucifer. But it is not a contradiction at all. Jesus brings the true light to the world. The light of Lucifer led the man to fall from Eden, because he agreed to follow him. But Jesus’ light brings salvation and a new life. And this is shown to the next verses which say: “I try to bring it back, the seed of life, I try to bring it back, the seal of light“. This is exactly what we wrote above. Jesus is trying to lift humanity back to its former glory. But it was not that simple.

So if you say, there’s no faith in man, you better keep in mind, that I can read between the lines. My heavy burden brings, eyesight to the blind“. A characteristic that Jesus had, to read into the hearts of people. He knows when people have faith (when he said “Your faith have saved you”), and he knows when they don’t (like Simon the Pharisee). Also, Jesus has the ability to perform miracles, to give sight to the blind as the song says. But this is a burden too, because many times Jesus was called on, due to accusations from Pharisses that his miracles, were the work of the devil, although Jesus did the best for the people.

Refrain No3: You can’t change me

Jesus is the Son of God (at least for the Christians) and nothing can change that fact. The Pharisees could not change Jesus, with their lies about him, with their assaults against him, not even with his death. Not even a week passed from his death on the cross and there were rumours of him ressurected. Jesus survived Jerusalem, because he was the Son of God. The other prophets were simple men and Jerusalem devoured them. But that is not the case with Jesus. Jesus was not put down by the city that used to kill prophets. And he managed to become the Messiah, for those who followed him.

Watch Precious Jerusalem with Lyrics here:

PS. I apologise, because the story analysis went religious real quick. It was a review of a story about Jesus, it was inevitable. I hope you had fun reading it!

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