A Doctrine of Pleasure
◆ In foretelling conditions that would exist in the “last days,” the apostle Paul said that men would be “lovers of pleasures rather than lovers of God.”
In his book What’s the Difference?, newspaper columnist Louis Cassels discusses “hedonism,” which he describes as “Faith in Pleasure.” He writes: “Many atheists find their positive affirmations in the attitude toward life called hedonism. The name comes from the Greek word for pleasure, and its intellectual ancestry traces back to the Greek philosophers, particularly Epicurus. The hedonist believes that enjoyment is the chief end of human existence.” According to this writer the hedonist follows the modern creed, “Live it up while you can; you’re a long time dead.” Mr. Cassels explains that hedonism is a form of religion, and comments: “Hedonists have never seen fit to organize a church, or otherwise institutionalize their faith. In fact, many of them find it expedient to pay lip service to other religious creeds and maintain nominal ties with churches that enjoy a high degree of prestige in the community. For this reason, it is difficult to estimate how many adherents this religion has in America at present. But the number is unquestionably very large. And it is growing quite rapidly.”
What should the Christian course be with regard to this ‘faith in pleasure’? After speaking about the “lovers of pleasures” and those who have ‘a form of godly devotion but who prove false to its power,’ the apostle Paul directed Christians: “And from these turn away.”—2 Tim. 3:1-5.