Does God need us to be glad?
On the again of Randy Alcorns new e-book,Does God Need Us to Be Pleased?: The Case for Biblical Happiness, is that this assertion: Uncover Gods revolutionary plan for our happiness! For those who didn’t know higher or knew nothing about Alcorn, you might need one among two reactions. First, should you had been on the lookout for some run-of-the-mill, self-help title, it would soar out at you. It has all of the buzzwords. Or,if youre acquainted with Alcorns ministry, you may suppose, Okay, whats he as much as? Not stunning, Alcorn turns that self-help expectation on its head.
Alcorn, prolific writer and founder and director of Everlasting Perspective Ministries, begins by asking the crucial query, Does God need us to be glad? The best way a Christian solutions that query will finally coloration all the things else surrounding the dialog.
Does God Need Us to Be Pleased?: The Case for Biblical Happiness
Tyndale Momentum. 192 pp.
What if we had been wired for happiness? For those who had been to ask a room full of individuals about how God needs us to dwell, youd doubtless get a variety of solutions.
Some folks would say he needs us to be holy. Others may declare he needs us to like folks and arise for peace and justice. However chances are high, you wouldnt hear anybody say, God needs us to be glad. All of us need to be glad, however we could really feel responsible for this longing. Isnt it egocentric to pursue happiness? Isnt it extra religious to frown than to smile?
In a world filled with brokenness, is happiness a worthy pursuit? For these looking for to observe Jesus, ought to this quest be written off as superficial and unspiritual?
InDoes God Need Us to Be Pleased?,New York Instancesbestselling writer Randy Alcorn affords a set of brief, simple readings on one among lifes greatest questions. As he explores what happiness is and the way we attain it, Alcorn gives knowledge, perception, and scriptural proof that God not solely needs us to be happyhe instructions it!
The setup is essential. Alcorn exhibits that happiness is a common longing (2); that the church traditionally has considered happiness as a constructive (34); and that God, as our Father, needs us to be glad (47)even tying happiness to the gospel (excellent news of happiness, Isa. 52:7).
So the reply toDoes God need us to be glad?, in line with Alcorn, is yesand the remainder of the e-book makes the biblical argument for why.
God Is Pleased
The construction, particularly early on, resembles a scientific theology. Alcorn transitions to point out that the triune God is the supply of happiness, then exhibits that Jesus was our instance of happiness on earth even amid struggling and unhappiness. For instance, Gods communal happiness with himself has vital implications for our happiness (12).
Virtually, Alcorn exhibits that Gods happiness is everlasting and unflappable, whereas the struggling and sin we see now could be non permanent as a result of King Jesus did and can lastly take care of it. What’s left to stay up for? Everlasting, unfettered happiness rooted:
By being glad within the Holy Spirit, in Christ, and within the Father, we lay declare to the truth that God is infinitely larger and extra highly effective than the Fall. We affirm that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will reverse the curse and reign over a brand new universe. . . . Our glad God is the God of all magnificence, which he kindly shares with all of us. (73)
This reality fully transforms a Christians pursuit of happiness. Considering these truths empowers a Christian to pursue a happiness rooted in God (78). And happiness goes off the rails after we search it outdoors of God (83).
In style Misconceptions
Alongside the way in which, Alcorn combats standard misconceptions, like the concept God is simply involved with our holiness and never our happiness, or that in some way happiness and pleasure are completely different.
The second distinction is so pervasive within the church as we speak, maybe particularly in Reformed circles, that it will get its personal chapter. I’ve heard the contrastjoy versus happinessmany occasions. He dispels this fantasy by historic and biblical utilization rooting pleasure and happiness in Jesus Christ.
Happiness goes off the rails after we search it outdoors of God.
A fundamental thread operating by Alcorn’s e-book is Scripture. He’s cautious to point out from Gods Phrase what happiness means. This effort culminates in a chapter displaying that the frequent phrase blessed truly means glad. It’s been to our drawback to not know this, since many trendy English translations have shied away from utilizing glad (59). Be aware that I mentioned English translations; Alcorn exhibits from different non-English translations that phrases like glad seem the place English translations used blessed. As Alcorn explains,
Which means English-speaking believers are uniquely weak to the parable that the majority different Bible readers on the earth are proof against: that the Bible says nothing about happiness and neither expects nor calls on us to be glad. (63)
Alcorn observes that some Christians are satisfied God doesnt need us to pursue happiness due to how folks wrongly pursue it. This may be mentioned for different issuessex, household, and or some other of Gods good presents (see ch. 9).
Its simple to see the abuse of one thing good and react by organising hedges to guard you from the flawed pursuit. However in doing so that you lose the blessing of the reward God provides. As Alcorn explains, ignoring or denying what Scripture teaches on one thing like happiness is harmful (64) as properly. We must not ever let concern preserve us from what God truly teaches is sweet. Despising Gods presents is an insult to God himself (97, 98).
Pleased Amid Struggling
Alcorn is cautious to not equate Christian happiness with care-free, suffering-free, sin-free dwelling. Typically we should pursue happiness amid struggling (133), however by no means in denial of it (134). As Alcorn writes, What if, when struggling got here, we confronted it with an underlying religion that demonstrates real gladness in God and thanksgiving to God? (165). Alcorn by no means loses that Godward focus all through the e-book, making it a must-read for Christians who wrestle with seeing pleasure as one thing they canand shouldactively pursue.
Pursuing Godward happiness and pleasure will solely assist us develop holy and put together us for dwelling within the new creation with our eternally and completely glad God. Its not simple. Its exhausting work. However had been empowered by the identical Spirit who has skilled excellent happiness throughout the Trinity and now resides in every believer.