Saturday, November 6, 2010

Christian Hedonism ... more thoughts

"Your will is energized based on your belief that one pleasure (whether immediate or long-term) is better than others ... Satan isn't responsible for this. God is. God made you this way so that you would choose Him and His soul-satisfying pleasures in lieu of those that pass with the using and ultimately leave you empty and miserable. The alternative to resisting the passing pleasures of sin isn't religious misery but relishing the permanent pleasures of God." (Storms, C. Samuel. Pleasures Evermore: the Life-changing Power of Enjoying God. Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2000. Print. 38)

So, assuming that we agree that we choose options based on pleasure-what makes us happiest is always what we will choose-one question that we are left with is do we believe that the ultimate pleasure and happiness can only be found in God.

Pascal addressed the assumption above saying "All men seek happiness, This is without exception. Whatever different means they employ, they all tend to this end. The cause of some going to war, and of others avoiding it, is the same desire in both, attended with different views. The will never takes the least step but to this object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those who hang themselves."

So, with that in mind, do I believe the following: If I will pursue lasting and ultimate pleasure I will invariably choose God. This is a key concept in Christian Hedonism.

This leads to the the final statement in the Storms' quote above which suggests that the key to resisting sin is not primarily suppression of desire but rather finding desire's fulfillment in the only source of true pleasure and happiness. This is, along with several concepts of Christian Hedonism, significantly different from much teaching we get about battling sin.

Give it some thought.

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