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Advent: The Dark Before the Dawn by Andrew Peterson

Andrew Peterson has quickly become one of my favorite songwriters of all time. And since much of his music deals with eschatology, it is fitting for the Advent season. This song, “The Dark Before the Dawn,” was my introduction to  Peterson’s music. It is a beautiful and honest picture of the Christian life, dealing with themes of darkness, waiting, and the hope of our Lord’s second coming. It serves as an excellent reminder of how the darkness “is a small and passing thing.”

(For those of you who are new to Andrew Peterson’s work, The Gospel Coalition has posted a helpful guide to his music.)


I’ve been waiting for the sun
To come blazing up out of the night like a bullet from a gun
Till every shadow is scattered, every dragon’s on the run
Oh, I believe, I believe that the light is gonna come
And this is the dark, this is the dark before the dawn

I’ve been waiting for some peace
To come raining down out of the heavens on these war-torn fields
All creation is aching for the sons of God to be revealed
Oh, I believe, I believe that the victory is sealed
The serpent struck but it was crushed beneath His heel

Oh, I know the wind can bring the lightning
Oh, I know the lightning brings the rain
Oh, I know the storm can be so frightening
But that same wind is gonna blow that storm away

Lord, I’m waiting for a change
I’m waiting for the change

So I’m waiting for the King
To come galloping out of the clouds while the angel armies sing
He’s gonna gather His people in the shadow of His wings
And I’m gonna raise my voice with the song of the redeemed
‘Cause all this darkness is a small and passing thing

This is the storm, this is the storm
The storm before the calm
This is the pain, the pain before the balm
This is the cold, the cold
It’s the cold before the warm
These are the tears, the tears before the song
This is the dark
Sometimes all I see is this darkness
Well, can’t you feel the darkness
This is the dark before the dawn

I had a dream that I was waking
At the burning edge of dawn
And I could see the fields of glory
I could hear the sower’s song

I had a dream that I was waking
At the burning edge of dawn
And all that rain had washed me clean
All the sorrow was gone

I had a dream that I was waking
At the burning edge of dawn
And I could finally believe
The king had loved me all along

I had a dream that I was waking
At the burning edge of dawn
I saw the sower in the silver mist
And He was calling me home

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