This year, I’ve heard more people mutter, grumble, and complain about the “world” than at any other time I can remember.
So, what are they muttering about?
What the World Is and Is Not
My sporty red 2003 Alero is an Oldsmobile, but Oldsmobile is not my Alero. Similarly, the “world” covers the earth, but the earth isn’t identical to the “world.”
Those seeking God and following His Word on earth are in the middle of the “world,” but aren’t part of that system. Instead, they shine as lights within that dark, evil system.
Many will become aware of the presence and glory of the Lord (Habakkuk 2:14). People from nations around the world will worship Him (Zephaniah 2:11). The day will come when the Lord will judge the world (Obadiah 1:15) and rule over all the earth (Zechariah 14:9).
What’s more, the day will come when the Lord shakes the heavens and the earth (Haggai 2:6; Haggai 2:21) and burns them with fire (2 Peter 3:7). Then He will present the new heavens and the new earth to be enjoyed by His followers for all eternity (Revelation 21:1).
The Lord God didn’t just create the earth and walk away. Instead, “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son” (John 3:16, NLT). What good news!
After His resurrection, the Lord Jesus Christ commanded His followers to “tell people about me everywhere — in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8, NLT). His good news is meant to be shared!
In turn, the Apostles Peter and John declared, “There is salvation in no one else! [besides Jesus]. There is no other name in all of heaven for people to call on to save them” (Acts 4:12, NLT). Therefore, call on the name of the Lord and be saved (Romans 10:17).
Active followers of Jesus Christ seek to “live clean, innocent lives as children of God in a dark world” (Philippians 2:15, NLT). How? “Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven” (Colossians 3:1, NLT).
Why reject the world system and all it stands for? James says, “Don’t you realize that friendship with this world makes you an enemy of God?” (James 4:4, NLT). Therefore, “stop loving this evil world and all that it offers you” (1 John 2:15, NLT).
Never forget, “the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world” (1 John 4:4, NLT).
Biblical Examples to Heed Regarding the World
Like Daniel, I will remain true to God in the midst of compromising situations (Daniel 1).
Unlike the Rich Fool, I do not trust in wealth alone to make me happy (Luke 12:15-21).
Biblical Truths to Affirm about the World
I believe God created the world [but not evil] (Genesis 1:1; Genesis 14:19-22; Exodus 20:11; 2 Kings 19:15; 1 Chronicles 16:26; Nehemiah 9:6; Psalm 33:6-9; Psalm 104:24; Psalm 121:1-2; Psalm 146:5-7; Isaiah 42:5; Isaiah 45:12; Jeremiah 27:4-5; Jeremiah 32:17; Jonah 1:9; Acts 14:15; Colossians 1:15-16; Revelation 14:7).
I believe Christians are to be a light in this world — beacons of hope, protection, truth, and joy (Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 58:10; Matthew 5:14-15; Luke 11:36; John 3:21; Acts 13:47; Romans 13:12; 2 Corinthians 4:6-7; 1 Thessalonians 5:5).
Biblical Commands to Obey Regarding the World
I praise God, who created the heavens and earth — the whole universe (Genesis 1:1; Exodus 20:11; 2 Kings 19:15; 1 Chronicles 16:26; Nehemiah 9:6; Psalm 33:6-9; Psalm 104:24; Psalm 121:1-2; Psalm 146:5-7; Isaiah 42:5; Isaiah 45:12; Jeremiah 27:4-5; Jeremiah 32:17; Jonah 1:9; Acts 14:15; Colossians 1:15-16; Revelation 14:7).
Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/ktsimage
David Sanford’s book and Bible projects have been published by Zondervan, Tyndale, Thomas Nelson, Doubleday, Barbour, and Amazon. His next book is Life Map Devotional for Men due out concurrently with his wife Renee’s next book, Life Map Devotional for Women.