(I can’t get no) Satisfaction

I might be showing my age – well I am – but I’m guessing many of us will know the rock band Rolling Stones, and therefore one of their big hits in 1965: (I can’t get no) Satisfaction. It was actually recently listed as number two in the top 500 songs of all time. Now although the lyrics seem to specifically refer to sexual frustration and commercialism, they are also suggestive of life in general, and therefore the inability to live out a satisfied life. Am I’m guessing many people, if they took the time to consider what’s actually being said in this song, would agree entirely.

Well, the former Archbishop of Sydney, Peter Jensen, who spoke last Sunday evening here at TGS on ‘Why he is still a Christian’, touched on this too – not the Rolling Stones! – but the sentiment expressed in this song. (As an aside, how blessed were we to have him minister to us, through his knowledge, teaching and preaching.) Peter spoke about someone very close to him who has now turned to the Lord Jesus in repentance and faith and how that person said: I was into all things that gratify and not the things that satisfy.

And this is exactly what we’re told in the Holy Bible. The whole book of Ecclesiastes in the Old Testament explores all the possibilities of life, as to where one might seek gratification. And although it doesn’t exactly mirror the lyrics of this song, its message is the same: there is a big difference between gratification and satisfaction, and satisfaction cannot be found in the ‘things’ of this life. And when we turn to the New Testament, we find not just a whole book but a whole person who says that what we seek and need in life can be found in him. And that person, the Son of God, the Christ who was promised in the Old Testament, is Jesus, and he tells us most directly that one of the reasons he has come is so that we may have life, and have it to the full (John 10:10b).

Well, I don’t know about you, but I know for me, that for the first thirty years of my life, I too was into all the things that gratify (and many of them good and wholesome things), but I was never satisfied, until I met Jesus. We can learn a lot from the secular songs people sing today. But the answers are not found in the songs. The answer is found in Jesus. Let him be the one who satisfies you, and he will.

Trev Saggers.


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September 13, 2020