Summary: Message 8 from 1 John continuing the admonition to stop loving the world.
“A Dangerous Love” Pt 2
John wrote as a loving father to the believers of his day so that they might better understand the glory of relationship with the God who is light and love. He wanted them to honestly evaluate the quality of their relationship. He wrote to inspire the deepest level of intimacy with God.
He exposed those who claimed to have a relationship that never existed. He exhorted those who, because of sin, were not experiencing the level of intimacy with God possible or preferred.
John used a number of words to express the desired level of relationship with God.
“fellowship” “know” “abide” “be in”
I. GOD IS LIGHT
A. THE MESSAGE: God is Light 1:5
B. THE IMPLICATIONS 1:6-4:6
1. Continually walk (live) in the Light 1:6-7 (Embrace His ways)
2. Continually confess sin 1:8-10 (Admit when you don’t)
3. Rely on your advocate 2:1-2 (Realize you need Jesus to intercede)
4. Give attention to His instructions 2:3-6 (Find out and do what He wants)
5. Love one another (don’t hate) 2:7-11 (Relate well to His kids)
6. Grow in your relationship with Him 2:12-14 (Keep growing deeper)
Last week we introduced a seventh issue affecting our relationship.
7. Stop loving the World and the things in it
a) The command “Do not love the world!”
John addressed this command to all believers at all levels of relationship. The object of the command is “the world and the things in the world”. John used a term that describes a number of different spheres of reality. The base meaning relates to order, adornment, and beauty
When John commanded the believers to stop loving the world and its things…
He did not mean to stop loving the world of matter created by God.
He did not mean to stop loving the world of angelic beings created by God.
He did not mean to stop loving the world of people created by God.
He commanded them to stop loving the world of systems, philosophies and products designed by Satan to fulfill God-designed desires apart from devotion to God. This divinely hostile “world”, otherwise known as Satan’s kingdom, represents the system of values, priorities, and beliefs that demons and the unbelievers hold that purposely excludes and/or opposes God.
It is a “world” that embraces self or Satan and his way of life.
It is this world that John warns us to stop preferring over God’s ways and purposes.
Stop preferring the devil-directed way of life and its stuff designed to keep us from being fully devoted to God. Listen to Paul’s concern for the Corinthian believers.
But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ. 2 Corinthians 11:3
Satan seeks to encourage us to seek to fulfill our God-designed desires for pleasure, possessions and prominence apart from His direction, enablement, involvement or purpose.
The action or prohibition of the command? Stop loving the world and its things!
The Greek negative prohibition “me” with the present active imperative verb means either stop doing something or do not have the habit of doing it.
Stop doing an action you are currently doing. “Stop loving the world or the things in it!”
Don’t get in the habit of a particular action. “Don’t get in the habit of loving the world!”
John used the particular word for love that indicates a committed devotion, allegiance, attachment, willful connection and devotion to someone or something. It is the 1 Corinthians 13 kind of devoted love that accepts someone for who they are and treats them with sacrificial care and commits to do what is in their best interest. One use of the word brings a clearer understanding in this context.
Nevertheless many even of the rulers believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they were not confessing Him, for fear that they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved the approval of men rather than the approval of God. John 12:42-43
The use of the word “love” in this context communicates the idea of strong preference. They preferred the approval of men over the approval of God. They valued the approval of men over the approval of God. It was a love that dictated certain actions. Their desire for approval, prominence, power and prestige on earth by men overshadowed their longing for God’s approval. John told the readers of his day to stop preferring the ways of Satan’s kingdom (seeks meaning in life apart from God) over the ways of God’s kingdom (seeks God’s the kingdom and his righteousness first). The Holy Spirit tells we who hear today to stop preferring the world and its stuff over intimate fellowship with the God who is light and love.