Spiritual Slumming

Genesis 3:4 The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die!”

All that is good and beautiful and true flows from God.  The whole universe is in harmony when it is aligned with him, like architecture that aligns with the laws of mass and gravity, of electrical charges and water permeability.  A builder who rejects the architecture’s design that is based on the laws of nature will destroy his own work just as we destroy ourselves when we deny the truth of God.  There is one truth, and God is its essence.  To call God a liar is to reject reality, and reality is a harsh teacher and irrefutable master.

Certainly there is real pleasure in the immediate gratification of forbidden desires, but it is a knife that will cut our roots and begin to shrivel our lives.  We suppose we know what is best for ourselves, what will be most beneficial and satisfying and enriching.  And when our desired path, our will, is in opposition to God’s will, we suppose that he has higher priorities, that his idea of good is very different from our conception of it.  We even hear Christians argue that he wants our holiness, not our happiness, as though the two are in opposition.

The reality is that God supremely wants our happiness, a rich, deep, true, undying happiness which can only be realized when we are in alignment with truth and beauty and goodness, that is, with God himself.  Our short-sighted, severely limited plan will simply lead to a slow personal collapse in which we spend our lives trying to artificially prop up the slum we have constructed.  God does not insist on his will because he is power-hungry, he insists on his will because he is wise and knows what ultimately will bring us greatest pleasure and fulfillment.  To contradict God is to contradict ourselves, to harm ourselves by building our lives on falsehoods that cannot withstand the pressures of life.

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