Thursday, January 25, 2007

An Edifying Discovery

American IdolUPDATED 1/26/2007

It is confession time! I must admit that I do enjoy watching American Idol (hate the name, though) once in a while. I could take or leave the weekly competition singing, voting, and finale, but I do enjoy watching the painful display of self confident singers who can’t sing. So, my wife and I were watching the Tuesday night edition of the audition phase of show and we not being disappointed. There were a few people who were given the kudos for being good singers, but we also saw some painful (and I mean painful) displays of performance singing.

About half or three-quarters of the way through the program, we were introduced to an interesting fellow. One of the highlighted tryouts was a guy by the name of Sean Michel, who has an interesting look to himself. Actually, in his own words, “Everybody says I look like either Osama bin Laden, or Jesus, or Castro, or just a homeless bum.”

Osama bin LadenFidel CastroSean Michel

Anyway, this guy came in and sang a pseudo-pop version of Johnny Cash’s song “God’s Gonna Cut You Down”. I had only heard this song for the first time in the previous few days on Way of the Master Radio. This song instantly grabbed me because of its lyrics, tempo, and the music. Here are the lyrics of that song:
You can run on for a long time,
You can run on for a long time,
Run on for a long time,
Run on for a long time,
Sooner, or later, God'll cut you down.
Sooner, or later, God'll cut you down.

Go and tell that long tongue liar,
Go and tell that midnight rider,
Tell the rambiler, the gambler, the back biter,
Tell 'em that God's gonna cut 'em down.

Well my goodness gracious,
Let me tell you the news.
My heads been wet with the midnight dew.
I've been down on bended knee,
Talkin to the man from Galiee.
He spoke to me in a voice so sweet,
I thought I heard the shuffle of angels feet.
He called my name and my heart stood still,
When He said "John go do my will"

Go and tell that long tongue liar,
Go and tell that midnight rider,
Tell the rambler, the gambler, the back biter,
Tell 'em that God's gonna cut 'em down.

You can run on for a long time,
Run on for a long time,
Run on for a long time,
Sooner, or later, God'll cut you down.
Sooner, or later, God'll cut you down.

You can throw your rock, hide your hand,
Workin in the dark against your fellow man.
But as sure as God made black and white,
What's done in the dark,
Will be brought to the light.

You can run on for a long time,
Run on for a long time,
Run on for a long time,
Sooner, or later, God'll cut you down.
Sooner, or later, God'll cut you down.

Go and tell that long tongue liar,
Go and tell that midnight rider,
Tell the rambler, the gambler, the back biter,
Tell 'em that God's gonna cut 'em down.1

Granted, Johnny doesn’t get around to the gospel in this song, but he does emphasize the judgment of God on those who deserve His retribution. So I’ve already been thinking about the meaning of the song (that I think Johnny Cash had well in mind when he wrote it) when Sean sang it on American Idol. As it turned out, we watched the show on a tape delay (after the kids were in bed), so I was able to rewind it after he auditioned and listen to something he said before the audition that also tickled my ears. After recounting how people describe how some people think that he looks like a bum, he said, “But really, I think all of us are kind’a homeless. When it comes down to it, all of us are really poor inside.” Now, again, I know nothing about this guy or what he’s all about, but I have been thinking about the concept of being poor inside for a few weeks too.

You see, John MacArthur has been preaching through the Sermon on the Mount and has talked about being poor in spirit, or in his words, being spiritually bankrupt. The whole idea is that this understanding of your place before God, being spiritually bankrupt, precedes conversion because we need to be brought low and to the end of ourselves so that we can see that it is only by Christ that we are saved.

I was hooked; my curiosity had been peaked, so I went on a search to see if I could find out anything relating to this guy, Sean Michel, and his beliefs. Well, the first hurtle was finding out his name, and after that it was smooth sailing. I came across his myspace page and I found that he is a musician (duh) who writes some pretty good Christian music. Not the fluffy stuff that you may hear on contemporary Christian radio, but good solid stuff that is edifying (so far, anyway) to me.

So whatever happens with Sean’s time on American Idol, I hope and pray that there will be (or has been) some good opportunities to share the gospel or that he would be given the opportunity to share the gospel with others through his own ministry apart from American Idol.






1 http://www.cowboylyrics.com/lyrics/cash-johnny/gods-gonna-cut-you-down-17262.html

1 comment:

Mike said...

I like to make fun of the show, but I actually caught that performance the other night. Interesting song choice.

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