Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Imagine There's No Heaven

John Lennon wrote a song released in 1971 called Imagine. It has since become one of the top songs of all time. I never really looked at the words until recently, although I was familiar with the tune since I heard it on the radio as a child. While it has redeeming qualities, such as imagining peace and no greed or hunger, there are a few verses that can be less than uplifting if one is a Christian, including imagining there's no heaven or religion --- but, this is exactly what I did today (imagining no heaven, that is).

Specifically, I asked myself I would still follow the will of God if there was not a "reward" (for lack of a better word) in the end. In other words, if Christians did not go to heaven, would I still be motivated to serve God? Part of the greatest commandment is to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, soul, strength and mind. Would I love my creator, then, if He did not offer heaven?

"No heaven" is hard for a Christian to imagine (no pun intended). It does get me thinking about my underlying motivations for serving God. Am I doing it to get my "prize," or am I doing it because I love the Lord my God? I hope it is the latter.

I don't know if this makes sense to anyone else, or if I just have too much time on my hands to think about random things.

Imagine - John Lennon
Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today...

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one


Anonymous said...

I agree the lyrics are disturbing for a Christian. As a Catholic I used to take some solace in "Let It Be" where McCartney sang, "Mother Mary Comes to Me" until I found out he was apparently singing about his own mother with the same name. Interestingly, though, a friend sent me a newsclipping recently unearthed of a Lennon interview describing the band as very, very Christian.

I don't think I can add an attachment but feel free to email me at " " and I can send you the newspaper scan.

Have a good one,

Anonymous said...

As a Christian, I find the lyrics troubling, but only in that many people might actually believe them. As a student of international relations, however, I cannot think of a more naive prescription for world peace ever written by an adult. I just have to ask "What was he smoking?"

Then again, did I really have to ask that?