Being a Christian Hedonist

According to Webster, Hedonism is “the doctrine that pleasure or happiness is the sole or chief good in life.” 

Hedonism is usually looked at with negative views fom the Christian community. And with good cause. When we think of solely pursuing pleasure, lewdness, lust, and passion are typically the first things to come to mind. 

However, my mind has been changed as of late. I have been reading John Piper’s ‘Pursuing God’ in which the whole premise of the book is being a Christian Hedonist. I have seen people’s perceptions as being far off, an enigma, and disconnected from us. However, we were created to dwell in communion with Him.

We were not designed to be separated from God, but rather to walk alongside Him. However, when sin permeated the world, it tore us from our God. God loved mankind so much though, He made ways for us to be connected. In the Old Testament, it was animal sacrifices, and feasts to allow us to atone for our sins, and to reflect upon Him. In the New Testament, Christ came down, sacrificing Himself as the ultimate and infinite atonement which satisfied God’s justice. We are now able to freely communicate with God, and I believe one day we will be united with God once again. 

With this being said, it is understandable how many people feel alienated from God. But we must remember our sole purpose is to bring Him glory. We were designed in His image, to engage in relationships with Him. It should be natural we desire Him. 

The premise of Desiring God can essentially be explained by Psalm 37:4 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” This is by no means the prosperity gospel, but rather when we die to ourselves, we become more like God, and our hearts align. 

We should run to God, delight in Him, and ultimately strive to be like Him. We have the opportunity to be freed by grace,  loved,  in communion with the Being that brought the world into existence. I cannot think of something to be happier about.

“All the words of God culminate un the praises of His redeemed people. The climax of His happiness is the delight He takes in the echoes of His excellence in the praises of the saints. This praise is the consummation of our own joy in God.  Therefore, God’s pursuit from us and our pursuit of leasure in Him are the same pursuit. This is at the heart of the great gospel! This is the foundation of Christian Hedonism.” 

 

If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to type away. If you do not know God, and have questions about Him, He loves you and wants to know you. 

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2 thoughts on “Being a Christian Hedonist

  1. Jason says:

    What’s posited here is certainly possible, if not a bit idealistic, but for one important reason: we’ve spent large portions of our lives in “traditional” hedonistic ventures. And while our life in Christ *should grow the longer we follow Him, “Christian Hedonism” would be one of those “approaching the finish line” enjoyable experiences where you’ve learned how to be satisfied taking up your cross and following Him.

    It’s a very, very thin line separating the practical, “shoe leather” doing of this “Christian hedonism” from plain ol’ hedonism; as we experience “fun”, it’s the easiest and most “natural” thing for us to go with the fun, whether it separates from the Christian part or not. Definitely a “tread carefully” area, soberly assessing ourselves and our weaknesses lest we become practically “proud” and follow that to our own fall. The times and seasons when I am walking closest with the Lord are truly my most joyous, “happy” times, but I don’t pursue the happiness, I pursue the Lord whether He leads me through lush green meadows or rough brown thorns. Not every part of following the Lord will be “happy”, but it will be joyous, either now or later.

    • Jason, thank you for your input! I am not saying we will be happy and joyful every moment in our lives, but we should always be pushing towards desiring God. For in Him is fulness of joy (Psalm 16:11). True contentment will only be found in Him. 🙂

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