"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. 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.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
Do not touch it, it’s hot. Do not cross the street without looking both ways. Do not open the door to someone you do not know. These are all things that we tell our children as they are growing more mature and becoming more independent. We tell them these things over and over until we begin to see them practice this habit on their own. We are not giving them these instructions to ruin their life but instead to teach them wisdom about avoiding pain so that they can be better equipped to go explore their world.
The writer of our verse starts out this chapter by saying these words: “My little children.” Just as any child is tempted and filled with intense longing when entering the toy store, we too, though older and more “mature,” are also tempted by all that the world proclaims is good.
Fame, success, material things, prestige, status, social media impact, self-image, and the list could go on for a very long time. Turn on any show, movie, podcast, talk show, or scroll through social media and it's very clear that what the world deems important is very far from what God’s standard for our life is. Our verse speaks of this perfectly! 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.
This verse is a command for us to reexamine our thoughts, our actions, and our priorities. The command is very clear. There is absolutely no ambiguity in it: 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.
Take a few moments right now. Examine your intentions, your actions, your habits, and your attitude. Are they echoing the world's mantra of “ME” as the god of my life? Or are they glorifying God, serving others, sharing the gospel, and pointing others to Jesus?
Everything in this world is fading away, but GOD will endure forever. Who is your God? Is it materialism? Is it prestige? Is it affirmation from others? Is it embracing a lifestyle that keeps God confined to a Sunday morning time slot? Our verse says this: “the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.”
So how do we live in the world but still do the will of God? We can start by making our life one of worship. We all must work, care for others and do the daily tasks that our jobs and lives require. As we do, we can intentionally seek God in every moment. We can fill our homes with worship music. We can read and listen to the scriptures. We must seek out friends who are pursuing the Lord. Moment by moment, choosing the things that keep our eyes on the Lord will put us in a position of knowing what God’s will is for our every situation, attitude and decision. I pray that today will find you looking to Jesus more, loving Him more, and finding yourself abiding in His will.
Dear Heavenly Father, I come to you today, asking that you fill me with hunger, with a burning desire to keep my eyes, my heart, and my thoughts on you. Teach me, guide me, and fill me with a clear understanding of what your will is in my life. May every worldly desire fade away and let my life be a clear reflection of who you are to those around me.
Tiffany Thibault is the author of the Bible study “Being Fruitful;” she loves leading Bible Study and speaking to women, encouraging them through truths from the Bible. She lives in the Mojave desert with her family and loves to explore the wilderness areas around her city.
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