Imagine …

John Lennon’s song ‘Imagine’ was in the headlines recently when some celebrities thought it would be a good idea to sing it at home, and release the clips to their social media accounts. It didn’t seem to have the desired effect! One journalist was appalled that they were spreading the message of “no heaven” when so many were dying from Coronavirus.

Imagine …

Over the nearly 50 years since it was written, the song’s lyrics have been the subject of much debate.

It opens with the line, “Imagine there’s no heaven, it’s easy if you try, no hell below us, above us only sky”. Instead of being inspirational, it is an incredibly sad and desperate message with no hope at the end of life … nothing.

The song asks us to imagine a life with no God and no eternity and to contemplate how perfect that world would be. Sadly, this is not a new proposition. Over the years, mankind has tried to remove God from their lives and the result has not been good. In the face of the many economic, environmental and health problems of our times the hopeless message of “Imagine” is inadequate.

“I can only Imagine” was written by a group called Mercy Me. This song, in stark contrast, is full of hope and asks us to imagine what our first day in heaven will be like. 

Imagine being in the presence of Jesus Christ, the Son of God; standing in awe of the perfect Man who died on the cross for our sins.

Imagine being in a place which is described in Revelation 21:4 (ESV), “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away”.

The message in this song is positive and true. There is a heaven and a hope. A place where we can live eternally in peace and harmony, all because “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

John Lennon asks us to imagine a world without God. In the Bible, God tells us that we cannot imagine the good things that are waiting in heaven for those who love Him – they are beyond our wildest dreams.

“But as it is written: ‘Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him’” (I Corinthians 2:9).

An empty song or the promise of the living God – imagine!


I can only imagine

what it will be like

When I walk by Your side


I can only imagine

What my eyes will see

When Your face is before me

I can only imagine


Surrounded by Your Glory

What will my heart feel?

Will I dance for You, Jesus

Or in awe of You be still?


Will I stand in Your presence

Or to my knees will I fall?

Will I sing hallelujah?

Will I be able to speak at all?

– Mercy Me