no earthly good

May 24, 2006 | 2 Comments

We’re talking about the end times this week at Pathways. More importantly, we’re talking about how to live in anticipation of them without mentally checking out of the present day. That dialogue led me to these lyrics:

No Earthly Good, by Johnny Cash

Come hear me good brothers come here one and all
Don’t brag about standing or you’ll surely fall
You’re shinin’ your light yes and shine if you should
You’re so heavenly minded and you’re no earthly good
No earthly good you are no earthly good
You’re so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good
You’re shinin’ your light yes and shine if you should
You’re so heavenly minded and you’re no earthly good

Come here me good sisters you’re salt of the earth
If your salt isn’t salted then what is it worth
You could give someone a cool drink if you would
You’re so heavenly minded and you’re no earthly good
No earthly good you are no earthly good
You’re so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good
You could give someone a cool drink if you would
You’re so heavenly minded and you’re no earthly good

If you’re holdin’ heaven then spread it around
There are hungry hands reaching up here from the ground
Move over and share the high ground where you stood
So heavenly minded and you’re no earthly good
No earthly good you are no earthly good
You’re so heavenly minded you’re no earthly good
Move over and share the high ground where you stood
So heavenly minded and you’re no earthly good
No earthly good…

  • very nice

  • NT Wright would disagree. In “Simply Christian” he makes a comment that people who make statements like “they are so heavenly minded, they are no earthly good” are operating under a dualistic worldview. It is the people who are most truly heavenly minded that are the most earthly good. In other words, the people in Cash’s song aren’t very heavenly minded at all. Start preaching that to the choir.