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If you tuned in for the Olympic ice-skating in Russia earlier this year, you probably heard a piece of music written by Japanese composer Mamoru Samuragochi. Over the last 20 years, Samuragochi has worked his way to the top of the charts, composing for both symphony orchestra and video games alike. And he did it all while being completely deaf!
But his meteoric rise came to a halt when a man stepped forward claiming that not only was Samuragochi not deaf – but he, not the famed composer, had been ghostwriting his work for the last 18 years. This revelation sent shockwaves through the classical music community. And people who had looked to Samuragochi for inspiration were left shaken and ashamed.
Now, I know that we all probably look to athletes, politicians and theologians as models for how to live our life. But just because they’re famous doesn’t mean that they’re somehow immune to stumbling. We are all human and we live in a fallen world. When people fall, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. Instead, it should point us back to the one never stumbled. His name was Jesus and he said this: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
Jesus faced ridicule, hostility, deceit, threats, abandonment, betrayal and finally an unjust and torturous execution. He also withstood internal temptation from evil itself and endured unimaginable mental anguish. Yet, for all this, he never gave in to sin – remaining pure not only for himself, but also for us. Through our union with Christ, his non-stumbling will stand in the place of our stumbling and we can trust in him wholly – without fear or doubt.
It truly is disappointing to find out one of your heroes has fallen. And for those who held Samuragochi in high regard, I hope they won’t be turned away from the artistic beauty found in classical music. But more than that, I hope all of us in our stumbling will remember to turn to the one who has promised never to lie to us and by his truth has brought us back into communion with our loving Father God.
I’m Joseph Tkach, Speaking of LIFE.