The Happiness of Man with God

“He [The Lord Jesus Christ] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist” (Col. 1:15-17 NKJV).

Jesus Christ is the goal of all, and the centre to which all tends. Who knows Him knows the reason of all things.

[“…attain to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:2,3 NASB).]

Those who go astray only do so from failing to see one of these two things:

  • It is possible to know God without knowing our wretchedness,
  • and to know our wretchedness without knowing God;

but we cannot know Jesus Christ without knowing at the same time God and our [natural] wretchedness.

Therefore I do not here undertake to prove by natural reasons either the existence of God or the Trinity, or the immortality of the soul,
nor anything of that sort, not only because I do not feel myself strong enough to find in nature proofs to convince hardened atheists,
but also, because this knowledge without Jesus Christ is useless and barren. Though a man should be persuaded that the proportions
of numbers are immaterial truths, eternal, and dependent on a first truth in whom they subsist, and who is called God, I should not consider him far advanced towards his salvation.

The God of Christians is not a God who is simply the author of mathematical truths, or of the order of the elements, as is the god of the heathen and of Epicureans. Nor is He merely a God who providentially disposes the life and fortunes of men, to crown His worshippers with length of happy years. Such was the portion of the Jews.

But the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob, the God of Christians, is a God of love and consolation, a God who fills the souls and hearts of His own, a God who makes them feel their inward wretchedness, and His infinite mercy, who unites Himself to their inmost spirit, filling it with humility and joy, with confidence and love, rendering them incapable of any end other than Himself.

All who seek God apart from Jesus Christ, and who rest in nature, find no light to satisfy them, but form for themselves a means of knowing God and serving Him without a mediator. [1]  Thus they fall either into atheism, or into deism, two things which the Christian religion
almost equally abhors.

The God of Christians is a God who makes the soul perceive that He is her only good, that her only rest is in Him, her only joy
in loving Him; who makes her at the same time abhor the obstacles which withhold her from loving Him with all her strength. Her two
hindrances, self-love and lust, are insupportable to her. This God makes her perceive that the root of self-love destroys her, and that
He alone can heal.

The knowledge of God without that of our wretchedness creates pride. The knowledge of our wretchedness without that of God creates
despair. The knowledge of Jesus Christ is the middle way, because in Him we find both…

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Heb. 11:6 NKJV).


“Blaise Pascal, 1623-1662, French mathematician, physicist, religious philosopher, and master of prose. He laid the foundation for the modern theory of probabilities, formulated what came to be known as Pascal’s principle of pressure, and propagated a religious doctrine that taught the experience of God through the heart rather than through [mere] reason.”

[1] “…God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time” (1 Tim. 2:3-6 NKJV).

Biblical quotations, bracketed words and italics added – JBW

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