Can Christians Live the “American Dream”?


First, what exactly is the “American Dream”?

The idea of the American Dream is rooted in the United States Declaration of Independence which proclaims that “all men are created equal” and that they are “endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights” including “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

According to Scripture, life and liberty came from God as a gift to mankind. Man did nothing to earn this “life & liberty”, but it was simply given out of the goodness of God’s heart.

Genesis 2
7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.

Genesis 1
26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

Therefore, Scripture supports the idea that man was created to have life and liberty.

But what about the fact that Christians are now in Jesus Christ and are no longer living for themselves. Does life & liberty still apply in this case? And what about the “pursuit of happiness”? Did Jesus come down to earth as a man, die, rose from the dead and ascend into Heaven so that we can live the “American Dream”? Is the “American Dream” Christian living???

Lets see what the Bible has to say about all of this.

Concerning the right to “Life”

Genesis 2

15    Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
16    And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;
17    but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

Genesis 3

6    So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

17    Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’: ” Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life.
18    Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, And you shall eat the herb of the field.
19    In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return.”

Romans 5

12    Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned

So God gave mankind life. But Adam, our forefather sinned, causing everyone who was born through him to have the sentence of death upon them. Therefore, we all have the right to die. As it is written,

Hebrews 9

27    And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,

And this is why Jesus came into the world.

Romans 5

6    For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
7    For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.
8    But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
18    Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.

Luke 19

10 for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

So what must we do to receive this gift of justification and life from Jesus Christ?

Acts 16

31 Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved

Acts 2

Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins

So every follower of Jesus Christ is given eternal life. But what about “Liberty”. Is a Christian still free to do whatever he or she pleases with there life?

That’s a good question. But lets first address something that was skipped. We’ll let Jesus address it.

John 8

34 Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.

Therefore, sin a the master of every person. And there is another master which the world has to contend with.

Genesis 3

4    Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.
5    For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
6    So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

Romans 6

16    Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?

Matthew 4

8    Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.
9    And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”

Ephesians 6

12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

1John 5

18    We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him.
19    We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.

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Therefore, America and its “dream” belongs to Satan. The “American Dream” is Satan’s temptation.

In others words, no one is free to do whatever they want. Therefore, Jesus Christ came to give us a different type of liberty. The liberty from our slave masters called sin and Satan.

John 8

31 f you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.
32    And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

36    Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

Everyone in Christ has a new master.

John 13

13    You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am.

John 14

23 If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.
24    He who does not love Me does not keep My words

Since Jesus is our master, what does he have to say about the “Pursuit of Happiness”?

Luke 9

“If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.
24    For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.
25    For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?

Luke 14

33    So likewise, whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple.

Mark 10

23    Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!”
24    And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God!
25    It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

So if we can’t live according to our own desires and pursue the things that make us happy, how in the world, are we supposed to live???

Mark 10

28    Then Peter began to say to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You.”
29    So Jesus answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel’s,
30    who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time — houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions — and in the age to come, eternal life.

2Corinthians 5

17    Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
Philippians 1

21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

‎2 Timothy 3
12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

John 15

12    This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
13    Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.
14    You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.

1John 3

16    By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
17    But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?
18    My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.
19    And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him.

Is this kind of life synonymous with the “American Dream”?

No. Not at all. It is much better!

It is belief in the one true God.

It leads to eternal life.

And it is the pursuit of pleasing the one who freed us from our sins.

As for the “American Dream”…

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1John 2

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 lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — is not of the Father but is of the world.
17    And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

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