The Stories Behind the Songs on This Single
Wed., Aug. 23. 2023 4:29pm EDT
J. Jackson, lead singer and lyricist for ApologetiX here again.
Here are the stories behind the songs on our 17th single of 2023:
FOR ALL THE gODS I'VE LOVED BEFORE
I never would have dreamed ApologetiX would spoof "To All the Girls I've Loved Before," but I almost did dream it ... the idea came to me unbidden as I was waking up on July 27, 2023. New lyrics started popping into my head before I could stop them. That's poetic justice, I suppose, because my college buddy Tom and I goofed around with funny, non-Christian words for the same song back in 1984 when it was a hit.
"To All the Girls I've Loved Before" was a two-headed musical monster with three inescapable arms, climbing to #5 on the pop chart, #3 on the adult contemporary chart, and #1 on the country chart. Rock stations were our only places of refuge. Speaking of which, a key scripture passage I allude to in the first verse is Proverbs 18:10 (KJV): "The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe."
This parody pertains to all the idolatrous things (and the forces behind them) that kept me from coming to Christ until 1988. It offends my grammatical sensibilities not to capitalize the fourth word in the title, but I don't want to dignify those "gods" with an upper-case letter.
As the Bible says, "For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many "gods" and many "lords"), yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live" (1 Corinthians 8:5-6).
TRY ANOTHER TOWN
I'd been wanting to spoof "Tie Your Mother Down" since at least 2019, maybe longer. I knew there had to be a good parody in there somewhere, but I didn't get the idea for "Try Another Town" until March 14, 2023.
Initially, I thought about Jesus' instructions to His disciples in Matthew 10:14: "If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet." He said similar things in the Gospels of Mark and Luke. But, as I began working on this parody, it seemed to match the mood of the Apostle Paul's missionary ministry.
Although Paul hadn't been present when Jesus made those statements in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, he got to live them out. If you've read through the Book of Acts, you know that Paul traveled to a lot of places — many of which initially welcomed him but later rejected him, often because of outside agitators. Nevertheless, in spite of repeated persecutions, he always seemed willing to try another town.
Paul knew that Jesus had told the Apostles to "go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19) and that they would be His "witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8).
I think the "try another town" technique is a good approach to take when sharing the Gospel. It's like the old Marvelettes song "Too Many Fish in the Sea": Don't waste your time on people who aren't interested ... there are plenty of others who will be, so go find 'em.