What does the Word of God say about the world? What does He say about the things of this world? It's sad to see so many ignorant Christians today(I admit I struggle with this topic too). So many are saturated with the things of this world, it doesn't surprise the unsaved we look just like anybody else! How can we be so ignorant of God's Word? When it clearly tells us to separate from the world! I've already touched on some examples of this in other threads. We legitimize, make excuses, as to why its ok to do things like the world.
The world operates under the god of this world. Before you became a Christian, you operated by the god of this world which embraced disobedience.
"In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them" 2 Corinthians 4:4
"Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:" Ephesians 2:2
God commands us to not love the world. You show your love to it by accepting worldly things and doing them! The things that are in the world are TEMPORARY. The world seeks temporary pleasures(a whole list of them) but Christians should seek the eternal!
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever." 1 John 2:15-17
Notice that God is Love. God loves good and hates bad! The Scripture below explains that love does not tolerate or condone wickedness! If God tolerated or mixed good with bad, He would not be true to His Word! Notice how God says in Scripture to "ABHOR", to "HATE" what is evil. He doesn't say to merely "dislike evil". God hates it with a passion!
"Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good." Romans 12:9
Why are many Christians so blinded to these truths? Why are we unable to DISCERN what is good? Because the obstacle to all discernment is straying from the Word and doing what the world does! As long as we continue to act like the world and approve of the world we will have a very hard time DISCERNING what is good and bad.
"And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God." Romans 12:2
We already established the world is opposed to God. We are liars by saying we love God while doing the things of the world!
"Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God." James 4:4
The world embraces evil, we are told to abstain from it! We are also told to abstain from the APPEARANCE of evil! If it even LOOKS like it embraces evil, do not do it! If it slightly suggests evil , do not do it!
"Abstain from all appearance of evil." 1 Thessalonians 5:22
Churches are DANGEROUSLY silent about sin today. Many are too afraid to offend people and get persecuted! I will tell you this, Jesus our Savior didn't waver! He offended so many people by being the TRUTH He was KILLED! He is the PERFECT example of not conforming to this world!
"Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? or who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity?" Psalm 94:16
"And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them." Ephesians 5:11
In the verse below, Jesus stood up to the workers of iniquity here! These people made the Father's house into a house of merchandise! The point is, while we are not commanded to "throw over the tables" when something is evil, we are not to sit back and just say/do nothing about it! The Merriam Webster dictionary defines "reprove" as to scold or correct, to express disapproval of! We are to do this with gentleness but without compromise. In fact, you could use the opportunity to witness the gospel in a situation like that(as they will probably be curious and ask why you dont approve of such a thing).
"And the Jews' passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise." John 2:13-16
The verse below says that those who do these things are worthy of death. The world does not know God, so the world fits this verse. Not only are those who do these things worthy of death, but those who have pleasure in those who do these things are also worthy of death!
"And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the
same, but have pleasure in them that do them." Romans 1:28-32
How can us Christians know if we are conforming to this world, even if we do not realize at a particular time that we are embracing certain things of the world? The world accepts its own! If you act like it you blend in! No one will really notice, no one will question you, there wont be any sort of persecution to you for righteousness sake, etc....In contrast, those that stand up without compromise for God, will be persecuted, will be ridiculed, will be spat upon! Read the following verses. They describe what a God-fearing Christian will face IF they are following God WHOLE-HEARTEDLY!!!
"If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also." John 15:18-20
"Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." 2 Timothy 3:12
"Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." Matthew 5:10-12
"Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf."
1 Peter 4:16
Again, I am asking God for help in this area myself! I do not mean to act condescending if some take it that way. I am just as guilty of this on occasion too! Your assignment this week is to OBSERVE what the unsaved tend toward(music, tv shows, games, entertainment, books, etc). I will guarantee that MOST of it will be in conflict with God!