"11 You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore." Psalm 16:11
Human flourishing/shalom is the result of a mind and heart centered on the goodness of Jesus.
“Shalom: The webbing together of God, humans, and all creation in justice, fulfillment, and delight is what the Hebrew prophets call shalom. We call it peace but it means far more than mere peace of mind or a cease-fire between enemies. In the Bible, shalom means universal flourishing, wholeness and delight – a rich state of affairs in which natural needs are satisfied and natural gifts fruitfully employed, a state of affairs that inspires joyful wonder as its Creator and Savior opens doors and welcomes the creatures in whom he delights. Shalom, in other words, is the way things ought to be.” Cornelius “Neal” Plantinga
“But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day. The way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble.” Proverbs 4:18-19
Happiness and competing voices
1. The way of the fool: denying the reality of God and his standards (Psalm 14).
Happiness is “Whatever makes you happy.”
2. The “noble man” who affirms fixed intrinsically known standards but does not embrace the biblical definition of God revealed in Christ.
“Fun morality, or submitting to the dictates of fun morality, makes the passive consumption of entertainment a more plausible road to happiness than subtler, more demanding pleasures, like learning to play the violin, acquiring a love for literature, or cultivating a beautiful garden.” Ken Meyers, Mars Hill Audio
3. The path of the believer (Psalm 16:11).
How the different paths approach the issues of racism and the transgender discussion...principles in walking the path of life
1. You cannot get on the path of life without the knowledge of the glory of Jesus.
Specifically, the resurrection of Christ, prophesied in Psalm 16:10.
2. Living/walking on the path involves diligence and personal effort/pursuit.
“So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, ‘If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’ John 8:31-32
“It is the duty of those who receive fuller light than others to lend them a hand in order to guide them and help them to find the sum of what God teaches in his Word. Therefore, we must give our attention to the chief and weightiest matters comprised in Christian philosophy (theology). For he who knows these things will be prepared to profit more in God’s school in ONE DAY than any other in THREE MONTHS...particularly if he has this rule: to embrace all that it is presented to him.” John Calvin, Institutes of Christian Religion, pp.6-7
3. Abba Father will lovingly discipline his child who leaves the path. And it is always done for our good.
“If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness.” Hebrews 12:8-10
4. The door to the path of human flourishing in Christ is open!
“To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.
9 I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:3-4, 9-10