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U2's 50 Greatest Songs

A definitive guide to 35 years of music that changed the world

50. "40"

Bono took this lyric from one of his key influences: King David, who wrote the Psalms. "I was always interested in the character of David in the Bible because he was such a screw-up. It's a great amusement to me that the people God chose to use in the Scriptures were all liars, cheaters, adulterers, murderers. I don't know which of those activities I was involved in at the time, but I certainly related to David. I was writing my psalm." U2's version of Psalm 40 ("I waited patiently for the Lord") gave War its big finale and became one of their trusty concert-closing singalongs.