Can pleasures of this life hinder our Christian growth?
Nearly everyone likes some sort of pleasure. The Lord is not against us having pleasure. The danger lies when pleasure becomes the focus of our life.
If they obey and serve him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures.
From the above scripture the Lord is not against us having pleasure. Also to mention that they are different types of pleasures, and for the Christian, pleasures in His presence are much more satisfying than pleasures of this life.
Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.
How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.
They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures
This article is referring to pleasures of this life. So when can pleasures of this life become a danger to us?
Pleasures of this life will become a danger to us under these circumstances:
- When we are given to pleasure:
Therefore hear now this, thou that art given to pleasures, that dwellest carelessly, that sayest in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me; I shall not sit as a widow, neither shall I know the loss of children:
When we are given to pleasure, we will live careless lives. Not giving regard or time to things that are more important than pleasure.
- When we love pleasure more than God.
2 Timothy 3: 1- 4
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
How careful we need to be. Being lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God is a sign of the last days. All you need to do, is look around and see the abundance of entertainment and pleasures we have. We will all agree that if these are not managed they can become major distractions and hindrances to our Christian growth.
You have an urge to pray, but you choose to finish watching the movie on TV before responding. That action could have cost someone their life. Or you feel an urge to go into your closet and spend time with the Lord, but o no, the computer game is getting interesting. We need to judge ourselves and be very careful.
- Allowing pleasures of this life to choke the Word sown in our hearts
Luke 8: 5- 14
A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.
And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture.
And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it.
And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be?
And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.
Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.
They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.
And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.
What choked the Word was cares, riches and pleasures of this life. And because of that no fruit was brought to perfection.
I think it is safe to say that most Christians are right here. We go to church or hear a good word, get back to the dinner, watch TV, go to bed then work the next day. In the middle of the week we go and play tennis, as the week goes by, we have not even opened the notes taken at church talk less of study them. We then go back to church the next Sunday to get more. How are we ever going to bring any fruit unto perfection with such a life style?
Each one of us have to count the cost of what it will take us to bring fruit unto perfection. When we count the cost we must be prepared to pay the price..
Are pleasures good? Yes to a certain extend, however if we are to be serious Christians that want to fulfil our purpose and understand His ways, we must be prepared to lay aside some pleasures and pay the price for eternal values.