In 1997, Lauri Thurén wrote an article with the title "Hey Jude" alluding to the classic Beatles tune. The article itself was not supposed to be performed but Thurén did propose that “Jude is … clearly designed to be read out aloud before an audience” (“Hey Jude! Asking for the Original Situation and Message of a Catholic Epistle”, New Testament Studies 43 : 454).
Simon Crisp therefore concludes in the introduction to his rap that "the present exercise might be regarded as a justifiable extension of the original intention of the letter." The more detailed relations between Simon's translation and the Greek text he documented in footnotes. However, with Simon's permission I publish it below without them. If anyone is interested in the full version with footnotes it can be downloaded under TC files for a few days:
Jude as a Rapper?
Listen up dudes – this is Jude! I’m JC’s man, I’m Jacob’s bro!
Our Father God loves you real good
You’re called and kept by Jesus Christ
May mercy, peace and love be yours right up to here!
I had in mind to write you, dudes,
About the freedom we all share
But first I had to make it clear
That being a believer means you sometimes have to fight!
Some people have sneaked up on us
(this was their fate from long ago)
These mockers make a mockery of God’s mercy
And they deny JC our lord and master.
I must remind you even if you know
That though our people once were saved from Egypt
They still got zapped because they didn’t believe.
Angels who didn’t keep their proper places
Were sent to hell and kept in chains and darkness
Until the great day of God’s judgement came.
Now Sodom and Gomorrah and their cities
Were just as bad as them – and kinky too
The fire of hell was where they ended up.
These people are the same – it’s like they’re dreamers
They treat their bodies bad, they diss their bosses
They even shake their finger at the angels.
Archangel Michael – man, now he was different
He had a fight about old Moses’ body
But didn’t dare to hurl insults at Satan
Instead he left the whole thing to the Lord.
But these don’t even know what they are dissing
They live and die just like wild animals.
Remember Cain? Well, they did just the same thing
Remember Balaam? Same thing there as well
Remember Korach? Yes, they blew it too.
They are the ones who spoil all your good parties
They got no fear or shame – just scoff the lot;
Clouds without water, trees without fruit and dead,
Throwing up filth and dirt like stormy waves
Like stars in the wrong place, heading for darkness.
Old Enoch (seventh from Adam) he said this:
I saw the Lord with thousands of his angels
He came to give a real hard time to sinners
For all the bad things that they did and said.
They’re always moaning, grumbling and complaining
They’re set on always doing what they want
They shoot off from their mouth at every moment
But they like to sweet talk every time it suits!
Dudes! Don’t forget the words of our great leaders
The ones who serve our good Lord Jesus Christ:
“Before the world ends there will be some mockers
Who do their own thing, making fun of God”.
These are the ones who go off on their own way
They’re all for pleasure now, and not God’s Spirit.
But you – your faith is holy, build it strong
Keep up your prayers, rely on God’s own Spirit
God loves you all, so you can be secure
His mercy lasts for ever – don’t give up!
JC will always see you through OK.
Some people wobble, and they need your kindness
Others you need to pull out of the fire
Be well afraid! It’s really not so easy
To help someone and not fall down yourself.
JC can keep you safe and sound for ever
And when he comes in triumph you’ll be there,
Jumping for joy and with your head held high.
So give our God who saves us all the glory
JC will help us say just what we mean:
God’s powerful, mighty, strong and lives for ever
And so our praise to Him will never end!