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The Passing of Pleasure

Written by Victor Stanley Jr.

Theology & Culture

In story published by Fox News, writer Michael Kaminer and photographer Marisa Scheinfeld discuss the Borscht Belt. The Borscht Belt is an area in upstate New York that “once epitomized glamour for East Coast middle-class families,”[1] and specifically Jewish families that would vacation at the various resorts throughout the area. The area was a destination of leisure, pleasure, and luxury from the 1920’s through the 1970’s, but is now just an eerie shadow of what it once was. The buildings and resorts that are still standing are in ruins, and photos of the abandon sites look like scenes from ghost movies. The Borscht Belt is now just a shell of its former glory.

The theological truth that can be ascertained from this story is simple, and is stated plainly in scripture:

[15] Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. [16] For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. [17] And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. (1 John 2:15-17 ESV)

This brief story of a once glamorous vacation destination that has become a dilapidated vestige of a once prestigious resort town is a reminder that all the pleasures of the world are only temporary. Furthermore, it drives home the fact that the temporal things only bring ephemeral satisfaction, as seen in the crumbling of the Borscht Belt that was due to people choosing to vacation in newer and more exotic locations. We are never satisfied by the desires of the flesh; only life in Christ can bring eternal satisfaction.


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