In 1646, The Westministr Shorter Catechism was drafted as one of the documents to improve the spiritual state of the then Church of England. For good reason, this Catechism became one of the primary tools of theological instruction for going on almost 400 years now. The Westminster Shorter Catechism is arranged as a series of questions and answers. It famously begins with “What is the chief end of man?” as question number one. The required answer is: “Man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.”
As Christians we all smile relish in the sheer profundity of that simple answer, but we don’t really know what it means. “Enjoy God forever” – sure, that is what “forever” is all about – eternity with God – we believe that, and love that. But “forever” includes “now”. And I if were to ask you all “Do you enjoy God NOW?”, I’m sure I’d get an uncomfortable variety of answers. Think about it – Do you enjoy God right
now? Did you yesterday? Will you tomorrow? Do you enjoy God?
Some of you might say yes – even if it only started now because of that question. Some of you might say “No, I guess I wouldn’t use the word “enjoy” to describe my relationship with God. The word “worship”, yes; “enjoy”, never really thought of it that way. And perhaps most would answer “I’m not even sure what you mean with that question. I “enjoy” many things in life, I don’t “enjoy” even more things in life, but again, not sure if I’d ever use the word “enjoy” to describe my relationship with God.
Yet, in Psalm 16, when dwelling on God’s earthly temporary goodness to him, David exclaims in v. 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.
Could you say that of your current situation? Could you affirm with David that the greatest pleasures of life are the pleasures experienced during worship? Do you “enjoy” God? Perhaps we can rephrase these terms and ask “How satisfied are you in God?” Does your time with the Lord each day bump your satisfaction level to an instant 10/10, or do others things need to fall in place during the day before you would consider yourself satisfied with life?
The book of Ecclesiastes confirms that we normally associate the words “pleasure” and “satisfaction” with things like entertainment (2:1-2), money (5:10), food and drink (6:7), children (6:3), and work (2:11). And yet, the chief duty of man is to “enjoy God forever” starting right now.
I think it would be fair to say that we have too little faith in God to satisfy us. We don’t really believe with all our heart that if we are right with Jesus, then we will be satisfied with whatever life brings.
Psalm 17:15 says that God-like holiness makes the righteous satisfied.
Psalm 63:5-6 says that sleeplessness at night is a source of satisfaction because it allows for meditating on God and His love.
In Psalm 65:4 the Psalmist affirms being satisfied with the goodness of being at the place of worship.
Psalm 107:8-9 reminds all to thank God, for He satisfies the longing soul.
We have too little faith in God to satisfy us. Remember, we love the Word of God because we love God. We love the work of God because we love God. Christianity is not primarily about Bible reading and Church ministry – those are merely the first points of change that take place when we come to know God Himself.