Summary: LENT 2 - Do not love the world. This is God's message. This is man's downfall.
“DO NOT LOVE THE WORLD” (Outline)
March 20, 2011 - Lent 2 - 1 JOHN 2:12-17
INTRO: Our Lenten journey includes a closer look at the suffering of our Savior Jesus. Last week the emphasis included the importance of the cross of Christ. Today’s emphasis is on the word of God that reveals everything eternal. As we grow in our faith we see how the world has less and less of anything important to offer for the believer. This world offers only that which is temporary. All too often this world offers only that which is evil. "What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?" (MATTHEW 16:26). Of course, the answer is obvious. There is nothing in the entire universe more important than our eternal soul. Our text reminds us: “DO NOT LOVE THE WORLD”. I. This is God’s message. II. This is man’s downfall.
I. “DO NOT LOVE THE WORLD” - THIS IS GOD’S MESSAGE
A. John makes it known to believers that God’s word is meant for believers of all ages and for all ages.
1. Verse 12. The dear children, youngsters, are reminded that their sins are forgiven.
2. Forgiveness is God’s gift to the children (and every believer) by the name of Jesus.
B. Verses 13b, 14a. The exact words are addressed to the fathers in two different verses.
1. The Christian father is important for every Christian home. God the Father created all things.
2. Christian fathers have the heavenly Father as their example. God the Father is merciful.
C. Verse 13b. Young men are addressed. They have overcome the evil one, Satan.
1. Verse 14b. The young men overcome Satan by the power of God’s word living in them.
2. Verse 12c. The children have seen the Father because of their fathers. God’s word is power.
D. The message of God is still our strength today. Notice how these verses speak of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God the Father has been from the beginning. God the Father created all things. Jesus provides believers free forgiveness by his own obedient death on the cross. The Holy Spirit plants these truths in our hearts. This is faith. God’s message is the word of God that speaks to all of creation. "Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads" (DEUTERONOMY 11:18). God’s message is to be in our hearts and seen in our lives.
E. God’s living and enduring word is our strength, rock, and fortress. The world around us is constantly changing. At times our world violently changes. Even the wisdom of this world often changes. Early scientists once taught that the earth was the center of the universe. They changed this theory to say the sun was at the center of everything. Today’s theory is still not truth with the discovery of many universes. Sadly, man has made himself the center of the universe. Rejoice, believer the message of God and his truth does not change. Be thankful believer that your eyes of faith have been given sight by the grace and mercy of our loving God. "From infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus" (2 TIM. 3:15). God’s saving wisdom never changes.
F. There is nothing else more important to each and every one of us than the simple and clear teaching of the law and gospel. God’s law shows us our sins. God’s gospel shows us our Savior. Now, to have a need for a Savior means that something wrong has been done. Today’s world is not so apt to admit to any kind of wrongdoing, especially one’s own evil. God’s message is straightforward. We are sinners. Our sins are forgiven. "For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ" (1 CORINTHIANS 3:11). Jesus Christ is still the very foundation of our faith. Jesus Christ is the very foundation of the Christian church. This is God’s message. Some try to weaken God’s truth by coming with their own message. My message or words matter little. God’s message is all that matters.
“DO NOT LOVE THE WORLD”.
This is God’s powerful message in his living and active word.
II. “DO NOT LOVE THE WORLD” - THIS IS MAN’S DOWNFALL.
A. Believers know God the Father, Creator. Believers know Jesus, Savior who provides forgiveness
1. Every true believer knows these truths by faith, the gift of the Holy Spirit. Such is God’s love.
2. Verse 15a. Only by faith can anyone hear these words and strive to live them.