The World Behind Me, Part 2
Today we finish our study of 1 John 2:12-17 and 1 John 5:21.
Do not love or cherish the world or the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world—-
the lust of the flesh [craving for sensual gratification],
and the lust of the eyes [greedy longings of the mind]
and the pride of life [assurance of one’s own resources or in the stability of earthly things]—-these do not come from the Father but are from the world [itself].
And the world passes away and disappears, and with it the forbidden cravings (the passionate desires, the lust) of it; but he who does the will of God and carries out His purposes in his life abides (remains) forever.
Little children, keep yourselves from idols (false gods)—-[from anything and everything that would occupy the place in your heart due to God, from any sort of substitute for Him that would take first place in your life].
As I look at these verses for a personal evaluation of myself, I am asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to me any areas in my life that would keep me from knowing God intimately and putting Him in first place.
We may think that we don’t have any idols in our lives since we think of idols as little carved icons or whatever, but what about the thing you spend the most of your time on. Is it Jesus or is it something which steals all of your time from Him?
What John tells us here in these verses is strong. We are not to love the world or the love of the Father is not in us. In the world are things that would gratify our senses (sense of touch, seeing, hearing, smelling, speaking). In the world are things that would satisfy the longings in our mind. In the world is self-assurance and faith in earthly resources to solve our problems. Self can sometimes be our biggest hindrance to faith in God. Most of us have been taught to depend on our own abilities since we were small. But God——-!
God wants to completely take care of us and has already supplied our needs and wants. What we must do is “let go” of all these earthly comfort zones on which we rely and choose instead to trust God. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal those places in your heart that belong to Him but which you have not been able to give over to Him. He is waiting! He will help you to become totally free of the world’s way of doing things and reliance on your own self-efforts.