“Keep the Faith” seeks to achieve peace with estranged parents. “I Believe” preaches self-reliance in a world of commercially pedaled ideologies, though it fails to distinguish between secular world views and Christianity.
Drinking makes unwelcome appearances on “Dry County,” “I Want You” and “Bed of Roses” (where Bon Jovi is “wasted and wounded . . . a bottle of vodka . . . still lodged” in his head). “Gonna Sleep When I’m Dead,” assumes you can show up for the “party” in heaven after living a morally reckless life “built for speed” here on earth.
Bon Jovi’s attempt to infuse this album with religious imagery actually presents themes closer to the principles of secularism and hedonism. They border on blasphemy with sexually charged “Bed of Roses” (“Close as the Holy Ghost is/Lay you down on a bed of roses”). The record title suggests religious convictions that fail to surface while offering a self-serving “salvation” teens can do without.