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Do Not Love the World

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Do Not Love the World

Sunday, May 18, 2008

"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."

(1 John 2:15, ESV)

1. "Do not Love the world" [me agapate ton kosmon] means either stop doing it or do not have the habit of doing it.

2. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that this confronts every believer today. James tells us "You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God." (James 4:4, ESV)

3. "If anyone loves the world" [ean tis agapai] can mean “if any keep on loving the world.” The love of the Father is not in him. This statement is opposite to that found in 2:5.

4. This use of the word "kosmos" is common in John’s Gospel as well as this letter and appears in at least three places - (John 1:10; 17:14; 1 John 5:19).

"He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him." (John 1:10, ESV)

"I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world." (John 17:14, ESV)

"We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one." (1 John 5:19, ESV)

5. John directs his warning to those people who already have switched allegiance and are now giving their undivided attention to the affairs of the world. However, he is not talking about a single incident but about a lifestyle.

6. Thus John writes that Jesus is the Savior of the world (4:15) and that by faith the Christian is able to overcome the world (5:4–5). According to John, the characteristics of the world are cravings, lust, and boasting (2:16). The world passes away (2:17) and is ignorant of God (3:1).

"Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God." (1 John 4:15, ESV)

"For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" (1 John 5:4-5, ESV)

"For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever." (1 John 2:16-17, ESV)

"See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him." (1 John 3:1, ESV)

7. The world hates believers (3:13) and is the abode of false prophets (4:1), the antichrist (4:3), and unbelievers (4:5).

"Do not be surprised, brothers, that the world hates you." (1 John 3:13, ESV)

" Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world." (1 John 4:1, ESV)

"and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already." (1 John 4:3, ESV)

"They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them." (1 John 4:5, ESV)

8. And last, the whole world is controlled by the evil one (5:19) and it is noted that there is a strong parallel between the ‘world’ and the ‘devil.’

"We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one." (1 John 5:19, ESV)

9. John warns the readers against loving the world and that which belongs to it. He does not advise the Christian to abandon this world or to live in seclusion. John stresses not that a Christian separate himself from the world. Rather, he says that a believer should keep himself from a love for the world.

10. “Love for the world and love for the Father cannot exist side by side.” The Christian will love the one and hate the other, but he cannot love both at the same time (compare Matt. 6:24; Luke 16:13).

"No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money." (Matthew 6:24, ESV)

"No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”" (Luke 16:13, ESV)

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