No one puts it as bluffly as Blaise Pascal in his Pensées:
All men request happiness. this can be while not exception. no matter totally different means that they use, all of them tend to the present finish. The reason for some reaching to war, and of others avoiding it, is that the same need in each attended with totally different views. the need ne’er takes the smallest amount step however to the present object. this can be the motive of each action of each man, even of these WHO suspend themselves.
There you’re. Warrior, pacifist, suicide, sluggard, workaholic; if you’re somebody’s, you’re a sensualist. you’ll be able to attempt to deny it, however you can’t modification it.
If you would like to undertake your hand at stoicism, forget the Bible. it’s very little for you. Scripture doesn’t support the thought that our motives ar a lot of pure the less we have a tendency to ar following our own joy. Nope. In fact, per the Bible, unless we have a tendency to ar following our happiness we have a tendency to cannot even come back to God: “for whoever would draw close to God should believe that he exists which he rewards those thatrequest him” .
God blatantly entices United States to hunt happiness, joy, pleasure (whatever you would like to decision it) in him with verses like this: “Delight yourself within the Lord, and he can provide you with the wishes of your heart” , and “in his presence is fullness of joy, and at his paw ar pleasures forevermore” . We’re purported to need pleasure.
Why will God need United States to need pleasure? as a result of it’s an important indicator. Pleasure is that themeter in your heart that measures however valuable, however precious somebody or one thing is to you. Pleasure is that the live of your treasure.
Your treasure is what you’re keen on. Your greatest treasure is what you’re keen on the foremost. “For wherever your treasure is, there your heart [your love] are going to be also” . You glorify your treasure by the very fact that it’s the article of your pleasure.
And that’s why God isn’t indifferent regarding your joy. It’s an enormous deal to him. Because, as John Piper says, “God is most authorised in you, after you ar most glad in him. Your pleasure in God is that the live of what proportion of a treasure he’s to you.
This makes pleasure conjointly the whistle-blower of your heart. If one thing sinful provides you pleasure, it’s not a pleasure downside. It’s a treasure downside. Your pleasure mechanism is probably going functioning simply fine. It’s what you’re keen on that’s out of whack. And pleasure is outing you. It’s revealing that, despite what your mouth says and therefore the image you are trying to project to others, one thing evil is precious to you.
That’s what sin is at the root: treasuring evil. that makes the fight of religion within the Christian life a fight for delight. It’s a fight to believe God’s guarantees of happiness over the false guarantees of happiness we have a tendency tohear from the globe, our fallen flesh, and therefore the devil. And yes, it classically involves deny ourselves contentment, however solely deny ourselves a slighter, viler pleasure so as to enjoy a far higher joy .
So be a full, unabashed, daring Christian Hedonist! Pursue your contentment in God, the best Treasure, with all of yourheart . “For wherever your treasure is, there your heart are going to be also”