It surprised me to find that the term, “pleasure” is the Bible 34 times! So anyone who thought that God wasn’t at all interested in pleasure, for him and for us, was pretty much mistaken. Problem is we don’t get what true pleasure, eternal pleasure, pure pleasure is. And we don’t know how to get it. Soren Kierkegaard said, “Most men pursue pleasure with such breathless haste that they hurry past it.”
In this brief podcast I suggest three categories of pleasure: sinful, spiritual, and simple pleasure.
Here’s an outline of the the Scriptures and salient thoughts:
Resisting sinful pleasures
- Proverbs 10:23 A fool finds pleasure in evil conduct, but a man of understanding delights in wisdom.
- Ecclesiastes 2:10-11 I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my work, and this was the reward for all my labor. Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun.
- 2 Timothy 3:4 … lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God
- 2 Peter 2:13 Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their pleasures while they feast with you.
- Titus 3:3 At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures.
- Hebrews 11:25 He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.
Reveling in spiritual pleasures
- Psalm 37:3-4 Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
- Psalm 16:5-6, 11 LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
Relishing simple pleasures
- Take a walk on the beach, in the mountains, in a park, around your block
- Listen to or make some music
- Make some art
- Read a good book (emphasis on “good”)
- Get some exercise at the gym, in a pool, on a bike
- Eat a healthy meal (not too much now!)
- Spend some time with a friend or loved one (No, texting doesn’t count!)
- Add your own favorite simple pleasures…
Check out these other posts on Simplicity: