It is odd that all sin seems to be tied up in pleasure. In fact, it is Yahweh, not Satan, who created pleasure, and at His throne there are rivers of it . Do you really suppose there are “No Swimming” signs on the banks?
Believers sometimes act as if fun and laughter diminish the seriousness of God’s sacrifice. Enjoying food, sex and abundance seems unspiritual to many Christians. They appear concerned that soaking up the sun on a hot July afternoon could dull their spiritual discernment. And, at first glance, it does seem that enjoying physical life is more carnal than a fervent prayer meeting..
The problem is that the Jewish God required His people to celebrate often and richly. Tithing consisted of celebrating God’s yearly abundance with a big party for oneself and one’s family. In fact, Yahweh told his people to sell their increase and buy “anything your heart lusteth after, including strong drink.” God taught the Jewish people that everything is spiritual. What we do with our money, our bodies and our food matters precisely because every aspect of life is infused with meaning and reveals God. The most spiritual thing we can ever do is create babies, each of which is made in the image of God. No one has ever made a child by going to church for a lively time of prayer and preaching.
Jews have been criticized throughout history for taking long holidays, indulging in excessive celebrations and exhibiting unbounded passion. Messiah taught that He came to bring us an abundant life; a life filled with faith, without fear. To fear pleasure is to mistrust the wisdom of God. Why would we rather flee from the bodies God gave us to enjoy than to discover why The LORD finds pleasure so important for human life? After all, when God created human bodies and sound waves, it must have occurred to Him that His people might dance..
As we hope in the promises of God, Peter writes that we become partakers of God’s divine nature. When the Spirit of Life lives in our hearts, then we can risk embracing everything that life has to offer and begin to richly enjoy all things.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer said that we do not really believe, until we place ourselves in “an utterly impossible and ethically irresponsible” position. We have to actually step out and live life, believing that God will enlarge our steps beneath us. True Christianity is dangerous. Paul appeared so reckless in trusting the grace of God that he was falsely accused of committing sin so that grace might abound.”
When Jesus created this earth, he built it to be pleasurable in every respect. Although we lost our relationship with our creator, the world remains an amazingly beautiful place, filled with wonderful creatures, beckoning all who live within it to taste its adventure and promise. It is true that before we return to God we are ill suited to really enjoy life. However, once we surrender to our beloved, we find every star in the sky, every leaf and blade of grass was perfectly designed and exactly placed to delight our every sense.