Date: 24 March, 2015
Text: I John 2:15-17
Title: Love Not the World
One of the shortest verses in the Bible says simply, "Remember Lot’s wife." (Luke 17:32) Verse 33 goes on to say, "Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it."
Lot was the cousin to Abraham. He moved into the wicked city of Sodom. The Angels took them by the hand and brought them out of Sodom just before God destroyed the city. They told her not to look back but she stubbornly refused and she lost her life because of it.
Ge 19: 17 And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed.
24 ¶ Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven;
25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. 26 But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.
Lot's wife had a past life that she refused to let go of. She wanted to hold hands with Jesus while holding hands with the world.
Luke 9:62 And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.
note: You are no good at plowing God's fields with your neck turned back facing the world. It does not work. Jesus is an "all or nothing" decision. There is no middle ground for those who want to follow Christ.
I've heard it said, "You are either a missionary or a mission field."
Every person in every generation has faced that decision of "whom will I serve?"
ill. The children of Israel - Joshua 24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.
Matt. 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
note: Mammon is money. You can't live for money and live for God. Money is part of the "world." Our text has much to say about the world. We are only looking at 3 verses this morning but "the world" is mentioned 6 times.
It is not the earth.
· the whole circle of earthly goods, endowments riches, advantages, pleasures, etc, which although hollow and frail and fleeting, stir desire, seduce from God and are obstacles to the cause of Christ
· the ungodly multitude; the whole mass of men alienated from God, and therefore hostile to the cause of Christ
There is an attraction that Satan gives to the world. He tries to make it look good and argues that it is acceptable even thought IT IS REBELLION AGAINST GOD.
So, this morning our message is very simply, "Love Not the World." Do you love the world this morning?
I. The Regulation.
15 Love not
exp. It is not calling us to depart from the world and live in deep dark jungles. Jesus himself said in John 17:15 "I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil." It is a command not to "love" the world.
def. Love - to esteem, to delight in.
ill. Imagine the disloyalty of a royal son who curries favor with the kings subjects by acting as one of them and mocking the king.
exp. The scoundrel has no love for his father and but loves those who are in rebellion against the king.
question: What do you really delight in? We are all in the world. But we don't have to love the world.
A. Don't love the world's ways.
exp. It would be "easier" as a Christian to accomodate the world. John warns us not to do it. "Love not the world."
· If the world laughs at crass humor should you?
· If you world enjoys sensual dress and sensual ways, should you?
· If the world uses God's name in vain and curses, should you?
· If the world lives for money, should you?
ill. Salmon go out to the sea, grow up, and then have to swim upstream to their birth place to spawn. It is not easy going up stream. Some of them die on the way. But, they must get their to produce the next generation.
app. Christians, we are going against the current. God has called us to go one way when the majority are going the other. JESUS DID IT SUCCESSFULLY AND SO MUST WE.
John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
B. Don't love the world's toys
...neither the things that are in the world.
· The world says, get the biggest house, get the most toys, get the newest car, accumulate things and that's where it is at.
· The world says, alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, immorality, etc. satisfies.
· The world offers position and promotions that guarantee pleasure. Don't believe it.
app. We are not to be enamored with the things that are in the world.
2Ti 2:4 No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
app. What are you living for? If it is sinful worldly pleasure, God says, "Don't do it!" If it is any worldly thing that is the focus of your life, God says, "You have got it wrong."
II. The Reason.
A. If you chose to disobey this regulation....
If any man love the world,
exp. The wonderful thing about life is that you have a choice. We value our ability to chose more than anything. God didn't create robots. He gave us each a free will. So, obeying this regulation is your decision.
ill. I'm saved this morning because, "God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." (John 3:16) But I am also saved this morning because of my choice as seen in Acts 16:31 "And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
exp. Guest what? You don't have to get saved and you don't to "love not the world." BUT BOTH ARE COMMANDS. Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
app. If you chose to love the world despite what God's Word says to the contrary, YOU DON'T LOVE GOD.
B. You are not loving God.
the love of the Father is not in him.
exp. This could mean that you are not saved. But, it certainly means that you hate God.
ill. People want things two ways today. They want to hold to their false teaching and at the same time say that they love God.
ill. We have a very simple test this morning to see whether or not we love God. There is only one question on the test. Do you love the world?
John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
"LOVE NOT THE WORLD."
app. It doesn't matter what you feel or think. What matters is what God's Word says and it says that if you love the world (and you know if you do) then you don't love God. Does it get any more serious than that.
ill. Have you heard about the man whose wife got upset at him for never saying, "I love you." He said, "I told you once when we got married and if I ever change my mind, I'll let you know." We want to know that we are love. SO DOES GOD. BUT HE DOESN'T CARE IF YOU SAY, "I LOVE YOU" HE ONLY CARES IF YOU SHOW, "I LOVE YOU.
app. Do you love God? Who is more worthy of love and what is he traded for but a sin cursed world.
C. The world is antiChrist.
1. It is against God from the word "go."
16 For all that is in the world,
exp. This can not possibly mean that jobs, wifes, children, sunsets, flowers, etc are bad.
ill. John speaks favorably about using money to be a blessing to someone. 1Jo 3:17 But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?
Again, it goes back to what world means. It has to do with wicked ways and wicked people. But, notice the totality of "worldliness" is against God.
exp. You can't justify worldliness this morning. It is indefensible. John will get a bit more specific.
2. The lust of the flesh is not of God.
the lust of the flesh,
exp. These are the sensual appetites. We have 5 senses. Taste, touch, smell, hearing and sight. All of them have appetites for things that are off limits and are the worlds goods.
note: The world offers pornography, alcohol, drugs, rock music, immorality, wicked dancing, etc. Satan is sly on getting people to bite on his sensual pleasure but those who do so are not ignorant of what they are doing.
ill. When Saul went to the Witch at Endor did he know where he was going. He was going to see and hear something that was off limits. He wasn't ignorant although he acted suprised when Samuel called him out on it. He died the next day because of it.
app. I don't need to play the Holy Spirit this morning and argue with someone who claims to be ignorant of whether or not something is sensual. Eve knew when she tasted the apple that she was disobeying God and when we taste of the world, our eyes are opened, our heart is convicted and we know it as well.
3. The lust of the eyes is not of God.
and the lust of the eyes,
exp. The lust of the eyes takes place when a commercial comes accross the tele or we are walking through the shop, or we are searching online and we see something that we have to possess for our temporal happiness. We are so desperate to have it that we covet it, steal it, borrow, or take possession without consulting the Lord.
ill. Remember Eve saw that it was good.
4. The pride of live is not of God.
and the pride of life,
ill. Satan told Eve that the tree was desired to "make one wise." She had the tripple temptation. How masterful Satan is to attack from all directions at once.
ill. Jesus was told in his temptation that he would be put in position of power if he obeyed Satan. At the time he had taken on humility and humanity. It was an appealing proposition of power. Matthew 4: 8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
app. Oh, pride will destroy many a good man. That desire for acclaim and notoriety. An inflated sense of self importance. It will destroy us just like it destroyed Satan.
D. Disobedience is indefensible.
exp. You can't defend sensuality, covetousness or pride. Because it....
is not of the Father,
but is of the world.
ill. A sheep will not roll in the mud like a pig because it has a sheep nature instead of a pig nature. If we are born again and have a new nature like Christ, we aren't going to slop around in the worlds pig pen.
John 17:16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
app. Christian, these are tempting things and we will fail at times. But, where are you living. Are you getting out of the mud or are you playing in it. We need to live in victory.
BY THE WAY.....Unsaved friend, you can have victory.
2Co 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
JESUS CAN AND WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE IFYOU WILL LET HIM.
- How to overcome:
1) God's promises give victory.
2Pe 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
2) God's power gives victory.
1Jo 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
app. Satan thought he had wrecked mankind but God had everything under control. He immediately came and restored his creation even though there were consequences to the sin. He had already planned to send his Son and he did so at just the right time to pay the penalty of our sin.
III. The Results. (There are two this morning.)
exp. If despite every admonition and chastening of God, we insist to continue in worldliness then.
A. If disobeyed - a wasted life.
17 And the world
and the lust thereof:
exp. There is nothing to it. You get to the end of your life and you look back and it is worthless. It was lived for the here and now and the here and now will get destroyed by God.
B. If obeyed - a rewarded life.
but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
exp. There is a way to live so that you are living for eternity. It is finding the will of God and doing it. Jesus lived successfully in the world by doing the Father's world.
John 9:5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.
exp. A light isn't covered in filth. It is pure and bright.
Mt 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
The message is pretty simple this morning - Don't love the world? Do you love it? Jesus wants to give you victory today but you have a choice. You don't have to get saved. You don't have to be sanctified. But, if you want your life to count for something you need to respond to His call to live right in an ungodly world.
John 17:11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.