Monday, August 13, 2007

Cleveland rocks!

Actually, it's Columbus that rocks--99.7 FM, to be exact. I'm a pretty picky radio listener, but this station played enough good, newer rock to keep my ears tuned in. Only 89X in Detroit and MSU's student radio, The Impact 89FM, have otherwise earned their keep on my dial.

Anyway, as I listened to 99.7 while heading out of Columbus yesterday morning en route to Richmond, I heard an ad for a "gentleman's club," if you know what I mean. The club's name is "The Sirens," or something like that. Their jingle beckoned listening males (or females, I suppose) to "heed the Sirens' call."

Of course, those who know their Greek mythology and have read Homer's Odyssey know that the Sirens were an enchanting group of women standing on the shores of a narrow, dangerous passageway between the islands of Sirenium scopuli. As sailors navigated the needlelike route between the islands, the Sirens beckoned them with their alluring, ethereal voices. Those men who listened were led astray, and their ships were dashed to pieces against the jagged rocks of the shoreline. How fitting is it that the Sirens' name is now attached to the tempting pleasures of pornography and cheap nudity with women!

Of course, we have two ways of dealing with this destructive sin--this sin to which neither I nor any man is immune, this sin which degrades women as mere bodies to be used and viewed for one's pleasure, this sin which says we can have "love" and "intimacy" and "sexuality" for no more cost than a few bucks out of one's wallet. We can be like Odysseus, who plugged his crewmen's ears with beeswax, opting that he himself be tied to the mast in order to still hear their song while staying "safe" from danger. We can steel ourself against temptation, thinking that we have the power to dabble with it and not get burned. This much won't hurt me, we think. It will stop here; I'm in control of this. But what a lie this is--and how easy it is to believe this lie in the face of all kinds of sins!

Or we can respond like the noble Jason. Knowing ahead of time about the dangers posed by the Sirens' song, he enjoined the service of a master violinist aboard the Argo. When they neared the dreaded islands of temptation, the violinist played his music. You see, this music was even more lovely, more heavenly, more pleasurable to the soul than that of the Sirens. By filling their senses with the music of the violinist, they passed through the straits unharmed. In like fashion, amid the persistent, daily temptations to "drift away" from the excellency Jesus Christ and succumb to lies that dull our God-senses (Heb. 2:1; 3:12-14), we are urged to fill our ears with a sweeter music. We hold the course and keep our navigation sure by beholding the beauty and supremacy and sufficiency of our Savior and Lord. "Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us" like a ship charting its course. How? By "fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God" (Heb. 12:1-2).

Jesus knew his life map, the route he had to take. He was fully aware it was going to hurt--he had to endure the shame of being cast "outside the gate" by his people and endured the agony of impalement and death upon a cross. Yet he knew "the joy set before him," and this kept him from listening to the alluring voice of Satan when in the wilderness he was tempted to take the easy path to glory. We need to believe persistently and tenaciously the richness of life under God's reign of blessing and the beauties of fellowship with the One who loved us so much that he never once gave in to temptation and spilled his blood to bring us into the joy of life with him (1 Pet. 3:18). With God's kingdom as our polestar and Jesus' voice the music in our ears, we can say confidently with King David, "I have set the LORD continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken" (Ps. 16:8).


Halfmom, AKA, Susan said...

while I would differ with your taste in music - I'll take better, older rock anyday - I do like your theology.

Anonymous said...

Drew Hall KID check this out! I'm putting on a 'cross race in Ithaca (no, not at the infamous Jailhouse trail...). Go to and click on cyclocross races, or just search for Ithaca Grand Prix of Cyclocross. Check it out and drop me an e-mail from the "contact" section. See ya, jb

P.s. congrats on the job!