While this song has a strong biblical reference and could well be interpreted as a prayer to God or to Jesus, I choose not to interpret it that way. I see it as the story of someone who has previously been a "loner" or otherwise without love in his life for some reason that he himself created, My own hands imprison me. The the first three verses are him looking at himself and describing what he sees. The very last verse is when he finds his true self/ gets where he wants to be, I have conquered my past, and finds someone who loves him and who he loves.
Moria Feighery-Ross mfeigherucsd.edu (contributed before the 20:th of February 1998)
This is probably one of the most personal songs that Bono ever wrote. While one could well interpret this as either a prayer or a love song, I think it is both at times. One thing Bono constantly complains about is how society refuses to believe there is connection between spirituality and sexuality. That's one of the reasons Bono is such a Bob Marley fan. In the second verse, Bono is talking about his life as a singer. "Many lost who seek to find themselves in me" and "They ask me to reveal/The very thoughts they would conceal" seem to be about Bono's relationship to his fans. It's about how music can empathize or fill a void in one's life. It's also about how Bono feels pushed to be so intimate with strangers in the unnatural setting of stadium. This is something that U2 didn't exactly do well until ZooTV. "I'm here without a name in the palace of my shame" perhaps makes reference to the fact that Bono is no longer Paul Hewson. It's also about Bono's feeling of guilt that he got so much for so little. The biblical reference to cursing "thy rod and staff" basically sums up Bono's view of religion. Bono has said that organized religion is,"the enemy of the spirit" he believes in God but he can't find God in the plodding, semi-bureaucratic organizations that are supposed have all the answers. After that line he repeats "Love rescue me" perhaps seeing God as love. On the whole, song seems to be a journey. I'm not sure how all the lines fit, as I said before, Bono sees no problem addressing both sexuality and spirituality at the same time, so it can be confusing. "Love" could mean God or maybe he's calling to his wife, Ali. Maybe it changes depending on who he's explaing himself to, as I said, I'm not sure. Love Rescue Me is a sort of an intimate view of Bono as himself and yet it's a song that a lot of people feel a connection with.
Dan Gouge gougeican.net (contributed before the 20:th of February 1998)
Bono formed most of the lyrics to this song when he had a dream about Bob Dylan. The song was for him. Dylan originally contributed lyrics for the song, but later withdrew them. I originally read it in the book U2:Rattle & Hum but I can't remember exactly where, although a lot of websites on Bob Dylan acknowledge both Bono & Dylan as being the author of the song.
Jon Chapple jchapplebrookes.ac.uk (10:th of May 2002)