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Pass it on

August 18, 2011

Another watch/listen/tell-inspired band choice – this time it’s the Californian rock band OK Go. Their style could pass them off as the musical cousins of The Yeah You’s.

White Knuckles is the OK Go song acoustically performed for watch-listen-tell (you can watch it here), but it was the lyrics of This Too Shall Pass which caught my attention. If you’re into bizarre music videos, you can search this song on YouTube to watch a couple crazy ones (see and Here’s a tamer, lyric-based version:

This Too Shall Pass

You know you can’t keep lettin’ it get you down
And you can’t keep draggin’ that dead weight around.
If there ain’t all that much to lug around,
Better run like hell when you hit the ground.

When the morning comes.
When the morning comes.

You can’t stop these kids from dancin’.
Why would you want to?
Especially when you’re already gettin’ yours.
‘Cause if your mind don’t move and your knees don’t bend,
well don’t go blamin’ the kids again.

When the morning comes.
When the morning comes.

Let it go, this too shall pass.
Let it go, this too shall pass.

Let it go, this too shall pass.
(You know you can’t keep lettin’ it get you down. No, you can’t keep lettin’ it get you down.)

There are two reasons why I chose to write a post on this song. The first one is because it reminded me of the transience of this world and our worries here. The other one reason I’ll save for dawn – when the morning comes.

When searching the word “pass” on, it struck me how many uses there are of this one word, most of which appear in the Bible and which we often use without a second thought: “it came to pass”, “pass through”, “years pass by”, “Passover”, “pass judgment”… the list goes on.

But the passage that first came to mind was this one: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.” (Matthew 24:35, Mark 13:31, Luke 21:32). It is interesting to note that these words, spoken by Jesus, are recorded in three of the four eye-witness gospel accounts of his life.

But what do they mean? Paul writes that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and for ever.” (Hebrews 13:8) He is constant, unchanging and everlasting. Contrast that to our world and our worries, even our good intentions – constantly changing and transient.

God spoke through the prophet Jeremiah to the Jewish people: “But I will pass judgment on you because you say, ‘I have not sinned.’ Why do you go about so much, changing your ways?” (Jer. 2:35b-36a)*

The Psalmist writes: “Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away.” (Psalm 90:10)

And Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes: “For who knows what is good for a person in life, during the few and meaningless days they pass through like a shadow? Who can tell them what will happen under the sun after they are gone?” (Ecc. 6:12)

Even “the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower. For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.” (James 1:10)

In the beautiful passage of 1 Corinthians 13 (looked at in this post: L.O.V.E.),Paul writes, “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.” (1 Cor. 13:8)

So life, wealth, even knowledge, are transient. “The world and its desires pass away…” (1 John 2:17a)

Contrast that to Daniel’s prophetic words about Jesus’ coming kingdom: “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days [God] and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.” (Daniel 7:13-15) There’s the word again – everlasting.

The verse from 1 John doesn’t end there. It is followed by a life-changing but: “The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.” (1 John 2:17)

It was Jesus who prayed just hours before he laid down his life as a sacrifice in order to free mankind, “Not my will, but yours be done.” (Luke 22:42b)

Jesus is the pass-Word to eternal life. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

*John writes: “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. Jesus said to the Pharisees (the proud religious leaders of his day), “You judge by human standards; I pass judgment on no one. But if I do judge, my decisions are true, because I am not alone. I stand with the Father, who sent me. ” (John 8:15) “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” (John 3:17). For more on God’s judgment, and how we can “pass by in safety” (Psalm 141:10b) if we trust in the loving sacrifice of his Son Jesus, read Dry Your Eyes and Dry the River – You Need Not Fear and Quiet Company and a Clean Page.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. February 22, 2012 13:21

    Love OK Go!

    This too shall pass is from Persian poets. I talk about it here


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