Petra Rocks My World!
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Beat the System - 1984

Track List

  1. Beat the System
  2. Computer Brains
  3. Clean - Audio
  4. It Is Finished
  5. Voice in the Wind
  6. God Gave Rock and Roll to You - Audio
  7. Witch Hunt
  8. Hollow Eyes
  9. Speak to the Sky
  10. Adonai - Audio

Album Synopsis

80's techno rock took Petra by storm on Beat the System. New keyboardist John Lawry provided took the synth work to the next dimension. This is a fun album to listen to--and one of my two favorites--because it is consistently good from beginning to end. Petra loosened up creatively as they experimented with this new sound, and that is why the album works so well.

Lyrics

Beat the System
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on Romans 8:37, Mark 10:31, Matthew 10:39

Caught in the undertow being swept downstream
Going against the flow seems like such a dream
Trying to hold your ground when you start to slide
Pressure to compromise comes from every side
Wise up, rise up

(Chorus)
You can be more than a conqueror, you will never face defeat
You can dare to win by losing all, you can face the heat - dare to
Beat the System

On the assembly line trying to break the mold
Time to throw the wrench that will stop it cold
Going against the odds being the underdog
Dare to wield the sword that will slice the fog

You can go for it all
You can go for broke
You can turn the tide around
You can aim for the top
And take the lion's share
If you dare to hold your ground

Computer Brains
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on Proverbs 23:7, 1 Peter 1:13, Philippians 4:8, 2 Corinthians 10:5

Everything that you do and see, one more event in your memory
Every bit takes another bite without control over wrong or right
You must screen every entry made, the consequences must be weighed
The only way to security is every thought in captivity

(Chorus)
Computer brains, put garbage in
Computer brains, get garbage out
Computer brains, programming you
Computer brains, what can you do?
Break out

Are you a user or being used, has your memory been abused?
Take random samples from your mind and analyze what you may find

You can clear all your memory and be transformed when you find the key
Think on the things that will bring you peace, confusing data soon will cease

Clean
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on 1 John 1:9, John 15:3

You may see me stumble, you may see might fall
You may see me cornered with my back against the wall
Maybe incognito, maybe out to lunch
Maybe caught red-handed or maybe just a hunch

(Chorus)
I'm clean, clean, clean before my Lord
I'm clean, clean, clean before my Lord
Like a spotless lamb, I'm blameless in His sight
With no trace of wrong left to right
I'm clean, clean, clean

Kneeling in the closet begging daily bread
There may be a skeleton hanging overhead
Where are my accusers, nowhere to be found
They all dropped their stones when the Master came around

I've missed the mark I can't deny it
I don't condone or justify it
But I've donen othing that His blood can't wash away
When I take it to the cross and start to pray

It Is Finished
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on John 19:1-30

In the heat of the early morning
On a hill they call the Skull
The roaring of the angry mob had settled to a lull
All eyes were cast upon the man whose hands and feet were bound
They saw him cry in anguish when they heard the hammer pound

They saw the bloody woven thorns with which His head was crowned
They watched the bloody cross of wood be dropped into the ground
The soldiers gambled for His clothes, they watched them win and lose
They saw the sign above His head that said "King of the Jews"

(Chorus)
(It is finished) And the sky grew black as the night
(It is finished) And the people scattered in fright
The work had been done, redemption had been won
The war was over without a fight
It is finished

They searched His face for anger, for vengeance in His stare
Instead of eyes that burned with hate a look of love was there
He prayed for their forgiveness and bowed His battered head
And noone knew the meaning of the final words He said

The provision has been made
The foundation has been laid
He paid the ransom due and tore the temple veil in two
And opened up the way for me and you
It is finished

Voice in the Wind
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on John 3:8

Wind may come, wind may go
Where it blows noone knows
Chill the bone, fan the fire
Lead the soul to hearts desire

(Chorus)
There's a voice in the wind that calls your name
If you listen you'll never be the same
There's a voice in the wind that points the way
Gently beckons to follow and obey

Spirit comes, spirit goes
Whence it comes noone knows
Giving life, making new
Filling hearts, calling you

God Gave Rock and Roll to You
Words and music by Russ Ballard

(Chorus)
God gave rock and roll to you, gave rock and roll to you
Put it in the soul of everyone.
God gave rock and roll to you, gave rock and roll to you
Put it in the soul of everyone.

You can learn to dance
Or you can be a square
You can let the music take you anywhere
But where will you be when the music's gone?

You can learn to sing
You can play guitar
You can learn to rock
You can be a star
But where will you be when the music's gone?

If you love the sound
Then don't forget the source
You can turn around,
You can change your course,
'Cause it's never too late to change your mind.

You can love the rock
And let Him free you soul
Or you can let the old man take his toll
It's never too late to change your mind.

The lyrics sung on the album differ from the printed version. I went with what was actually recorded on the album.

Witch Hunt
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on 1 Timothy 4:7, Titus 3:9

Everybody look there's a new bandwagon in town
Hop on board and let the wind carry you around
Seems like there's not enough to keep us busy till the Lord comes back
Don Quixote's gotta have another windmill to attack

(Chorus)
Another witch hunt looking for evil wherever we can find it
Off on a tangent, hope the Lord won't mind it
Another witch hunt, takin' a break from all our gospel labor
On a crusade but we forgot our saber

There's a new way to spend all our energies
We're up in arms instead of down on our knees
Walkin' over dollars trying to find another dime
Never mind the souls 'cause we really haven't got the time

So send out the dogs and tally ho
Before we sleep tonight we've got miles to go
No one is safe, no stone's left unturned
And we won't stop until somebody gets burned
Bro Bro Bro Bro Bro Bro Brothers

Hollow Eyes
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on Matthew 25:35-48

Another day in Nigeria the children beg for bread,
The crops failed, the well ran dry
When they lost the watershed

A baby dies, its mother cries, the children gather 'round
They're wondering what the day will bring
Will they be the next one found?

(Chorus)
Do you dare to gaze into their hollow eyes, hollow eyes?
Are they staring holes in you with their hollow eyes,
Hollow eyes, hollow eyes?

In the crowded sheds the children lay their heads
To escape the Haitian heat
The hunger pains drive them to the street
Wond'ring if today they'll eat
Some find food in the refuse heap, others find disease
Some find it harder just to live when they can die with ease.

The least of these is hungry.
The least of these is sick.
The least of these needs clothing.
The least of these needs drink.
The least of these knows sorrow.
The least of these knows grief.
The least of these has suffered pain, and Jesus is His name.

(2nd Chorus)
Do you dare to gaze into His hollow eyes, hollow eyes?
Is He staring back at you with His hollow eyes,
Hollow eyes, hollow eyes?

Again, the lyrics to this song are different than what is printed inside the cover, especially in the chorus. I wrote what is actually sung on the album.

Speak to the Sky
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on Matthew 7:7-8, Psalms 86:7

In a corner with no windows - no apparent way to go
No escape hatch, must be some catch
Must be something you don't know

Look down, look around, all your hopes are sinking deep into the ground
Look up through the night, SOS is gonna make it to the light when you

(Chorus)
Speak the sky and wait for the answer
Someone will be there to take your call
Though you may be at the brink of disaster
Speak to the sky and you never will fall

When temptation will surround you
Enemy is closing fast
Fight insistence with resistance
You can know that it won't last

Look out, look around, cryin' out but noone seems to hear a sound
Look into your heart, help is on the way before you even start to

Adonai
Words and music by Bob Hartman
Based on Genesis 15:2, Matthew 5:6, Hebrews 12:29, Psalms 40:2

This thirsting within my soul
Won't cease til I've been made whole
To know you, to walk with you
To please you in all I do
You uphold the righteous and your faithfulness shall endure

(Chorus)
Adonai, Master of the earth and sky
You alone are worthy, Adonai
Adonai, let creation testify
Let your majesty be magnified in me
Adonai, you are an endless mystery

Unchanging consuming fire
Lift me up from mud and mire
Set my feet upon your rock, let me dwell in your righteousness

When the storms surround me, speak the word and they will be still
And this thirst and hunger is a longing only you can fill