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Pure Pleasure: Why Do Christians Feel So Bad about Feeling Good? [NOOK Book]

Overview

Gary Thomas, one of this generation’s most popular and accessible writers about the spiritual life, explores what it means to build a life of true pleasure—one that will liberate the believer’s spiritual life, marriage, family, Christian community, and outreach.

Many Christians assume “pleasure” and “sin” are synonymous. Others define godly pleasure so narrowly that they drastically minimize the powerful and holy role that pleasure can play in...
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Pure Pleasure: Why Do Christians Feel So Bad about Feeling Good?

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Overview

Gary Thomas, one of this generation’s most popular and accessible writers about the spiritual life, explores what it means to build a life of true pleasure—one that will liberate the believer’s spiritual life, marriage, family, Christian community, and outreach.

Many Christians assume “pleasure” and “sin” are synonymous. Others define godly pleasure so narrowly that they drastically minimize the powerful and holy role that pleasure can play in their lives. Still others feel guilty even thinking about how to build a life of pleasure. For all of them, Pure Pleasure provides an entirely new paradigm. It invites contemporary Christians to embrace a life of true pleasure as a pathway to obedience, worship, and service.

Building on his bestselling books Sacred Pathways, Sacred Marriage, and the Gold Medallion-winning Authentic Faith, Gary Thomas takes readers to a new level of faith by providing a theological and inspirational framework to help them cultivate the kind of life that pleases God. Abounding with spiritual insights and practical exercises, this book provides the freedom to approach life in Christ with new wonder and joy.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780310563716
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Publication date: 10/20/2009
  • Sold by: Zondervan Publishing
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 505,033
  • File size: 701 KB

Meet the Author

Gary Thomas is a writer in residence at Second Baptist Church in Houston, Texas, and an adjunct faculty member teaching on spiritual formation at Western Seminary in Portland, Oregon. He is the author of over a dozen books, including Sacred Marriage, Sacred Pathways, Pure Pleasure, Sacred Parenting, and the Gold Medallion Award-winning Authentic Faith.


 

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 10 of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2011

    10/27/11

    Exceptional! Every Christian should read this book.

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  • Posted February 4, 2010

    Finding the pleasure

    Gary Thomas, bestselling author of Sacred Marriage, has a new release entitled Pure Pleasure. In this book, Gary focuses on the question of why Christians feel so bad about feeling good. Different kinds of pleasures are examined and the costs associated with each. He also looks into why God allows us to experience pleasure as well as why satan doesn't want us anywhere near it. It's a timely message that will hopefully inspire many Christians to look past being in bondage to a religion and truly experience the pleasures God created for His children.

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  • Posted January 12, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Reclaiming Pleasure

    We all remember the Puritans, who seemed afraid to allow themselves any fun, and tried to deny everyone else the right to enjoy themselves. That is a somewhat stilted stereotype, but seems valid enough. The Puritans had such an idea about holiness that they were concerned that if you enjoyed something too much, you would be shifting your vision from God. Having fun was somehow thought to be evil.

    Too many of us have some degree of this false piety in our background. This misguided and unscriptural idea about life, joy and sin has so perverted the concept of God and life in certain circles that for some time in great segments of western society, fun or enjoyment became synonymous with sin! Gary Thomas makes an attempt to rectify this and re-center our vision.

    The western Reformed tradition has suffered under a dour cynicism about life, focused around fear of sin, instead of the love of God. This contradicts the foundational perspective stated in the first statement of the Westminster Shorter Catechism (1647):

    Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
    A. Man's chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.

    Enjoyment is indeed holy, and the enjoyment of God is an opportunity Faith provides and enables us to fulfill. Fun is holy, relatoinaships are holy. Sex is holy -- the relationshp between Yahweh and his people is portrayed most commonly in sexual language! Thomas describes some practical ways in which enjoyment of various aspects of life is an instance of the enjoyment of God. He portrays this concept by telling numerous true stories of his own experiences and those of many others he knows.

    Thomas builds a biblical and theological foundation for the concept of pleasure. He draws upon the perspectives by John Calvin to correct the view of those who are more Calvinist than Calvin. Calvin provides insights to his followers on taking a holy view of as reclaimed by God and dedicated to him.

    Another reviewer of this book has expressed one problem I had as I read. While this is a very practical and focused view of the goodness of God, and the high desire of God that his creatures live the full life, at times Thomas' analyses seem to be self-indulgent. The author is sensitive to the problem of self-justification, and I appreciated his self-monitoring comments along the way. But at times it seems like he stretched the Divine approval thin in rationalization of benefits he enjoys.

    Overall, this is a thoughtful and helpful book. This thesis is by no means new, but perhaps for the audience Thomas addresses, these will be new suggestions or insights. I was not familiar with Thomas, though on occasion I had seen a reference to his name in works by other authors.

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  • Posted December 15, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    God delights in our pleasure

    Whenever I got a new car, my mom said "I've never seen that car before". A week later, she'd said, "Those cars are all over the place!"
    I had a similar response after reading "Pure Pleasure" by Gary Thomas. I've read the verses mentioned in this book before, but as individual verses. Gary challenged my thoughts as he discussed them together. Now I see verses about pleasure "all over the place".
    Through this book, I came to understand that God wants to build healthy pleasure and joy into our lives. Especially important is that our healthy enjoyment pleases Him. In these difficult times, this book is especially meaningful.

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