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Why Christians Don't Love the World

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
June 8, 2022 4:00 am

Why Christians Don't Love the World

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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Saying this all along.

There is an inherent systemic mutual exclusivity between the world and the kingdom of God.

There is antipathy in the heart of the unregenerate world for the truth cannot love the world and know God calendar how you spend your time. What would he say you love the most. What you love what you devote yourself to reveals vital truth about you and your relationship with Christ. John MacArthur shows you why is he looks at the life of Judas and Dimas and how their ungodly examples show you how to think and how to live and how to honor the Lord. It's part of John study titled the love God hates and with today's lesson. Here's John MacArthur, first John chapter 2 verses 15 through 17 do not love the world nor 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 lust of the flash and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life is not from the father but is from the world and the world is passing away, and also its lusts, but the one who does the will of God abides forever. Here we can have the test of true Christianity.

This time the test is loving or not loving the world. We've had doctrinal tests in this remarkable epistle of John the test of true understanding of Jesus Christ test of a true understanding of one sinfulness had moral tests the moral test of obedience. The moral test of loving others.

Then we come to another test.

It fits and again the moral category of the behavioral category and that has to do with not loving the world if anybody loves the world, the love of the father is not in him. That is to say he has no relationship with God.

Judas provides a sort of strange encouragement to me because even under the Lord of Lords tutelage and discipleship.

There was a defector. There's another New Testament defector that I want to draw your attention to second Timothy chapter 4, the apostle Paul set a model for ministry that all of us follow and that is a model to do your ministry and in a partnership with a team of faithful men and even women who come alongside to serve, and Paul refers to these people on numerous occasions and even indicates how dependent is upon them. It is typical for Paul to refer to them in his epistles.

Some of them are further identified in the book of acts, but second Timothy four has a good list that is representative of Paul's partnership verse 10 there is the name of Dimas. What sort of heads the list and then there is Kristin's and then there is Titus and then there is Luke and then there's reference to Mark in verse 11, and to check us in verse 12 and Duffy gone down a little further agreed process and a quill. In verse 19 the household of unassessed for us Erastus, who remained at Corinth drove from a selected Miletus and there is humorless and there's Peardon's lioness Claudia all the brother in this kind indicates that there was this group of people that were around Paul throughout his ministry were very familiar with that. What makes this chapter particularly unique as this is the last chapter he ever wrote. This is the finale.

This is the swansong.

This is the end of his life. Soon after this, he was martyred and he indicates that that's obviously on the horizon. Verse six of chapter 4. I'm already being poured out as a drink offering. He was a prisoner when he wrote this. By the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I finished the course, I have kept the faith. And he's now looking forward to the crown of righteousness laid up for him, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, not only to me but all those who loved his appearing. So he is really knowing that he's at the end of his ministry is over.

He's been faithful to the end. He will soon be executed. This great life. This most noble of all human lives has come to its end and from my standpoint he is. He's my hero is absolutely on the human level. Apart from Jesus Christ. My great that he should've gone out with a hero sending he should've gone out with an appropriate fan fair everybody around him should've given him attributes attribute that would've exceeded all the people.

Perhaps you ever lived.

The greatest calling anybody could ever have would be to be an apostle of Jesus Christ.

He had that and of all the apostles. He's the most greatly used apostle because he was used to write at least 13 books of the New Testament the accumulated power of his life. The power of his message the breadth and height and length and depth of the contribution he made in the inspired writings that he gave the spread of the gospel to the Gentile world, which in effect makes him of the founder, as it were of the Gentile church and all that comes beyond that really flows out of his ministry should have caused the greatest of accolades to be given to him at the end of his life yet at his last.

Our story is humanly speaking tragic this heartbreaking if you go back to chapter 1 for a minute of second Timothy Paulus concerned to pass the baton of ministry to young Timothy. He wants to have Timothy take over his ministry. Every pastor who gets to the later years of his life. I can certainly speak for that becomes very very conscious of who's going to follow. Who is going to pick up the ministry who's going to take the baton who is going to receive the mantle carry on what has in the gun, and Timothy of course was Paul's choice but Timothy was struggling seriously. He says to Timothy in verse six of chapter 1 Kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you because Timothy was obviously letting his gift fall into disuse. He tells them not to be a coward. In verse seven God has given us a spirit of timidity or a spirit of cowardice tells them in verse eight. Don't be ashamed of the testimony the Lord don't be ashamed of me his prisoner be willing to suffer is really an interesting insight into what Timothy was like at this particular time at the most crucial time in Paul's life when he wanted to pass the baton pass the mantle have Timothy take up the work. Timothy needed to be using his gift he needed to be strongly needed to be courageous and needed to be unashamed and bold for the cause of Christ and of Paul.

He needed to be willing to suffer, and in fact, the opposite was true of all of his tendencies were in the other direction.

Verse 13 he says hold on to sound words, which means that Timothy may have been on the brink of even abandoning the truth because it brought so much persecution and so much hostility.

Verse 14 he tells them to guard the treasure, which is the word of God and then he reminds him.

In verse 15 of this really remarkable reality. You are aware of the fact that all who are in Asia turned away from me. How can it be that everybody in Asia minor the very place where Paul ministered most of all abandoned him. The price was too high. How many defectors did Paul have how many people in whom he invested his life defected pieces all over in Asia turned away from any names for jealous and Hermogenes is a couple of examples. They probably named them because of their prominence was probably some shock value and that Ziff can you believe it Timothy but for jealous and Hermogenes have defected and abandoned me when he does refer to the house of all sufferers Lord grant mercy to house a vociferously often refresh me and wasn't ashamed of my chains, so there was at least the household of vociferously was faithful over in chapter 4. Again he says it.

My first defense. No one supported me, but all deserted me, may not be counted against them. That's the attitude of Stephen that's the attitude of Jesus on the cross, the Lord stood with me and strengthen me was the end of that verse delivered out of the lion's mouth where Paul comes the end of his life at the time when he should be receiving all the kudos and all the accolades and all the affirmation and all the honors when everybody should be rising and a great chorus triumphant thankfulness to God for this man's life. People are abandoning him in every direction, and that takes us to verse 10 where he says Dimas having loved this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica prison. This is in Galatians, not a defection probably sent by Paul. Titus is in Dalmatia only Luke is here Timothy, when you come would you bring Mark with you. He's useful to me that you kisses in Ephesus. It's getting cold here, by the way, when you come, could you bring my cloak which I left a trial as we purposely could you bring me the books, especially the parchments we gets very sort of sad sentence. He's alone only Luke is there a combination of missionary work and defection has scattered his beloved friends, but the only one who's really noted as a defector here in chapter 4, jealous, and Hermogenes.

In chapter 1, is this man Dimas in verse 10, you need to know the Dimas event. A coworker with Paul for many years. He was a close friend of the apostle Paul. What a privilege. I would cherish that I would love to have followed around the apostle Paul in Colossians chapter 4 verses 12 and following Paul writes a path for us, who is one of your number that is he was from the church in Colossae. Pathos is one of your number.

A bondslave of Jesus Christ sends you his greetings, always laboring earnestly for you in his prayers, that you may stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God by bearing witness that he is a deep concern for you and for those short Laodicean her up Luke, the beloved physician send you his greetings and also Dimas.

This man Dimas was was in some pretty rich company, very rich company.

Come to think of it path for us bondslave of Jesus Christ. What kind of spiritual character did he have a man who labored earnestly in prayer for his beloved church that they would stand perfect and fully assured in all the will of God. The man who had a deep concern for the believers. There spiritual man and then Luke the great biographer who wrote the gospel of Luke in the book of acts.

The physician of Paul, the private personal physician at the end of the book of Philemon. We read this Paul sending greetings a path for us. My fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus greet you as do Mark Aristarchus Dimas, Luke my fellow workers. This man Dimas was around the best Paul path for us.

Luke Mark Aristarchus all that to show you the Dimas was associated with some very formidable men preachers of the word of God, faithful men, men of prayer, church planters, men who suffered, yet it was in that very company back to our text.

Second Timothy four. As we look back at Dimas to read Dimas having loved this present world, has deserted me, deserted me. Dimas has deserted strong work. The verb in the Greek means to completely forsake it means to utterly abandon the idea is to leave someone in serious need just ask yourself how can he do that after having lived under the influence of the apostle Paul himself incredible example all the others that he was surrounded with the influence of men like Timothy and Luke in a path for us and Aristarchus and Mark and Vanessa Miss there was influence their tremendous influence, but he left.

Why verse 10 says it all, having loved this present world, having loved this present world.

There is there is if you love the world, the love of the father is not in you.

What is the world the system of evil. The system of lies and deceptions and falsehoods and evil conduct that goes with it all the ideologies raised up against the knowledge of God is second Corinthians 10 five any ungodly idea. He loved the world he loved the system of the world.

Human wisdom human thought, human ideologies, the religions of the world, theories, philosophies that his heart so we conclude in the Dimas was rocky ground that the seed went in plant popped up for little while but when the cost was persecution and suffering and tribulation. It withered and died.

He was also weedy soil where the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches, choked out the seed, Jesus describes that you remember his parable of the soils the gospel see died before never bore fruit. This is what it is to love the world, you can be around the truth, you can make profession of the truth, you can get into the Association of the most elite people in Christian ministry, you can be a companion co-laborer coworker with the apostle Paul and not be the real thing.

Do I think that Paul knew that no do I think that Luke or Timothy or Pat first knew it. No time and truth go hand-in-hand, and eventually the reality became known and when Paul was about to be martyred for the faith. Dimas saw as it were. The handwriting on the wall. The price was more than he wanted to pay, and he departed, forsaking the apostle because he loved this present world, the love the system more than he love God, love. But the world offered with this idea is in its conduct more than he loved what God offered him in his kingdom. This is deadly to saving faith.

James chapter 4 verse four is a verse that builds on this before we look again into our text James for for you. Adulteresses, very strong language from James you harlots. You prostitutes do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God. Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God been saying this all along. There is an inherent systemic mutual exclusivity between the world and the kingdom of God. There is antipathy in the heart of the unregenerate world tour the truth of the gospel, you cannot love the world and know God, because the world hates the truth the world they were talking about not talk about the created order. Not talking about the world of humanity were talking about the system of human thought, sinful, corrupt, fallen human thought, whatever form it takes, whether philosophical or religious. Anything that is against the revealed word of God constitutes the world you member James when James said that he was writing a course to Jewish readers.

James 11, says James, a bondservant of God and the Lord Jesus Christ to the 12 tribes who are dispersed abroad. James running the 12 tribes scattered Jews dispersed abroad. Those who were professing Christ, obviously, but writing to Jews. He speaks to them of spiritual adultery. He speaks to them of spiritual harlotry and that's because that's very familiar to them. Jewish readers would know that the Old Testament chronicles Israel's spiritual adultery. In fact, second Chronicles. The book itself is a good place to note that what we just read you some things out of second Chronicles chapter 21 and I'll start at verse 11. Moreover, he made high places in the mountains of Judah because the inhabitants of Jerusalem to play the harlot. This is pretty much what the kings did, but this is referring to Johor.

He made high places in the mountains of Judah because the inhabitants of Jerusalem to play the harlot that is metaphorically to commit spiritual adultery and, of course. Dinner goes on to talk about the judgment of God. Jeremiah wrote about that other lots of places in the Old Testament, but just a few Jeremiah chapter 2 in verse 20 it for long ago I broke your yoke and tore off your bonds but you said I will not serve God is saying, you know, I took you out of slavery made you my free servant you said I will not serve on every high hill under every green tree you have laying down like a harlot, what are they doing every high hill and with every green tree they created ashram's as it were. They traded places to worship idols.

This is spiritual adultery. Jeremiah 3. God says if a husband divorces his wife, and she goes from him and belongs to another man, will he still return to her will. Not that land be completely polluted, but you are a harlot with many lovers. Yet you turned to me, declares the Lord, as if to say what he expected to do take you back after you've polluted the land with your harlotry and with your wickedness, spiritual defection, and is described as a kind of harlotry in verse six of Jeremiah 3 the Lord said to me in the days of Josiah the King. Have you seen what faithless Israel did. She went up on every high hill under every green tree. She was a harlot there and I thought after she had done all these things you will return to me but she didn't return her treacherous sister Judah sought southern kingdom.

When I saw that for all the adulteries of faithless Israel. I sent her away and gave her a writ of divorce yet her treacherous sister Judah didn't fear she went was a harlot also came about because of the lightness of her harlotry that she polluted the land and committed adultery with stones and trees. This is a way to describe Israel's spiritual defection. It is a kind of harlotry. I suppose you could read it. Also, in Ezekiel chapter 16, but it's the book of Hosea that most directly confronts this in Hosea 1 to the Lord first spoke through Hosea Lord said Hosea go take yourself a wife of harlotry. This is because he was literally going to be a living illustration of the spiritual harlotries of Israel, which defines her worshiping other gods idols chapter 4 verse 15 Israel plays the harlot chapter 9 verse one. Same thing. So that's just background to what were saying back to James for for for a minute and James for for you. Adulteresses, so he's borrowing language very familiar to his Jewish readers anything you adulteresses if you are a friend of the world. You literally have committed harlotry against God. You are in a hostile posture you have made yourself gods in the me, God's enemy. That's another Old Testament concept. Deuteronomy 32, 41, I will render vengeance to my enemies and repay those who hate me. Psalm 2189, your hand will find all your enemies.

You are right hand will find those who hate you, you'll make them as fiery as a fiery, other than the time of your anger Psalm 6821 God will wound the head of his enemies.

Psalm 72. Nine. His enemies will lick the dust name 12, he reserves wrath for his enemies.

And so it goes.

Demas was guilty of spiritual harlotry, Dimas had become the enemy of God and all I can say is what wasted opportunity. What wasted privilege were to Dimas go turn back to second Timothy for one final note, there Dimas, having loved this present world, has deserted me. Paul says in going to Thessalonica. Why did he go there. I don't know specifically some worldly reason. Maybe it was some friendships that he had was going back to the life that he used to live had to hypocritically subdued for a few years, but Thessalonica was a big city about 200,000 people so he could get lost. There was right on the via Ignatius.

The main trade route, so everything in the world was there all the philosophies were being espoused there. All the material things in the world that were being carried back and forth from the west to the east came through their crossroads city. All that the world offer will be available. That's where he went and he proved in the doing that he was not a child of God Alice go back to first year and the command here is in verse 15 do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the father is not in him. Dimas did not have a love relationship with God he didn't love God and God didn't love him, saving only he failed the test. He loved the world, loving the world. As I told you last week is impossible for true believers because the world is an anti-God system and you can't love God and love the world, you can't. As Jesus said serve God and Mammon. Salvation is a deliverance from the world, its ideologies, its viewpoints, its anti-God posture you're listening to Grace to you with Bible teacher John MacArthur. He's a pastor, conference speaker and Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary and his current study is from first John chapter 2 showing you the love God hates note today's lesson looked at two men, Judas and Dimas who both rejected God and embrace the world. Sadly, John. Many of our listeners probably know a friend or a loved one who has walked the same path as these false disciples. And so with that in mind and wondering what can our listeners say to that person in their life who has rejected the gospel that once he professed how can they show a person like that love and compassion. You know that is a very provocative question because that person who has known the gospel professed the gospel and rejected the gospel could well be an apostate from which there is no recovery.

You know if you've trampled underfoot the blood of the covenant and considered it an unholy thing and done, despite to the spirit of grace. There remains no more sacrifice for sin. Another way that it's spoken of in Scripture is it's impossible to renew those who have known the truth and turn from the truth. Seeing they crucify the son of God afresh and put them to open shame. I think the only thing you can do with someone who once confessed the gospel and rejected the gospel somebody like a Judas or Dimas is demonstrate a fearful, frightening warning, because that's what Hebrews does after the warning passage about defecting. It says this is a fearful frightening terrifying thing to fall in the hands of an angry God. Look, we've got a ramp up the dire realities of apostasy may be that that person has not yet finally apostatized. I think that's the best way to show love and the best way to show compassion, that's right. And thank you, John NL friend. It may be that you haven't heard a lot about the issue of apostasy, but this is an important subject to get your mind around.

So to help with that.

John MacArthur recorded an interview titled when believers stop believing and it's free to download. You can get your copy today. You'll find that The full title of it is when believers stop believing subtitle portrait of an apostate. It will show you what to think and what to do when a pastor or an elder Christian friend or a loved one suddenly rejects Christ again. That interview is downloaded today and know if John's verse by verse. Teaching is help you understand maybe for the first time what it means to follow Christ. Or perhaps you're seeing your family strengthened by God's word. Remember this broadcast is available in your area because of the faithful, supportive listeners like you to partner with Grace to you mail your donation to Grace to you PO Box 4000, panorama city, CA 91412. You can also make a one-time donation or set up a recurring gift TTY.when you call us at 855 race L4 John MacArthur.

I'm your host Phil Johnson.

Thanks for listening today and remember to watch Grace to you television this Sunday on DirecTV channel 378.

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