WHAT IS A BIBLE CHRISTIAN? (Part 2)
“I have given them thy word: and the world hateth them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.”
SUMMARIZATION OF FIRST STUDY
In our initial sermon on this subject, this preacher noted that he would ask the above question in his sermon title and then not answer it until the sermon’s final statement. In the initial study, yours truly noted that the word “world” has three distinct meanings in Scripture: (a) The World of CREATION, the world of nature of which the Psalmist wrote in Ps. 8:3-4. This is truly a beautiful world and definitely NOT the world about which Christ was speaking in our text. We noted that (1) this world was created by Christ—Col.1:16, that (2) this world consists [holds together] by Christ—Col. 1:17 and that (3) this world will be consumed by Christ—II Pet. 3:10.
This preacher then noted that the second use of this world in Scripture refers to (b) God’s Creatures, to the inhabited world of human beings, to that class called “humanity,” to the world of people whom God loves, and for whom He sent “his only begotten Son” into the world. Christ was certainly NOT referring to that use of the world in John 17:14-16. Our attitude toward this world of “people” ought to be the same as God’s perspective, to love this world of eternal souls, just as Christ loves them and to seek to bring them to the Saviour-II Cor, 5:14.
The world to which Christ was referring in our text is the (c) world of the Cosmos, the world system controlled by Satan, of which he is its controller and dictator. The Apostle Paul wrote about this evil world system when he stated concerning Christ in Gal. 1:4: “Who gave himself for our sins that he might deliver us form this present evil world [system], according to the will of God and our Father.” This world, world #3, is the world of human society, of human culture, outside the will of God, the wicked world system that Mr. Satan operates and controls.
In our first study, we noted that this world is (a) CONTRADICTORY to God—James 4:4, that it is (b) CONSPIRATORIAL against God—I John 5:19, and that it is (c) CONDEMNED by God—John 12:31. We also stated that the Scripture declares that this world—world number three—will someday be destroyed by Christ in His Revelation—Dan. 2:44, II Thess. 2:7-8, Rev. 20:10. We further delineated that because of the above three facts, the world system #3, the world controlled by Satan, deprecates and hates the Christ presented in the inspired Scripture—John 7:7 and that thus it likewise deplores the loyal Christian who stand with Christ in this present evil world—I John 3:1 & 3:13.
Finally, in our first study, we discussed seven traits of genuine Christians with regard to this evil world system controlled and operated by Satan: (1) Our COMMANDER is not of this world—John 8:23; (2) Our CALLING is not of this world—Phil. 3:14, Heb. 3:1, II Tim. 1:9; (3) Our CITIZENSHIP is not of this world—Phil. 3:20; (4) Our CAPTIVATION is not of this world—Heb. 11:24-26. (5) Our COMMUNION is not of this world—I John 1:3; (6) Our CHAMPIONS are not of this world—Hebrews chapter 11; and (7) Our COMPANIONSHIPS are not of this world—Ps. 119: 63, James 4:4.
CONTINUATION OF STUDY
8. OUR CARGO IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM): Our real treasures are NOT earthly possessions which will cease and terminate at our human decease, or more properly state, our heavenly home-going. Now it is a fact that everything we can view with the human eye will either someday deteriorate, rot or cease its reality. But as citizens of an eternal world, we have eternal cargo we can take with us to heaven.
In Matt. 6:19-20, Christ spoke about these eternal possessions when he said: “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth where moth and rust and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal". But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven where moth or rust doth not corrupt and where thieves do not break through or steal. The Apostle Paul wrote about these eternal treasures when he looked through the eternal lens and wrote in II Cor. 4:18: “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
9. OUR CONFORMITY IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM): In Rom. 12:1-2, Paul instructed believers with this strong admonition: “I beseech you therefore, brethren by the mercies of God that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
The word “conform” in this context means “to fashion, make or shape like another” The consecrated believer NEVER seeks to fashion or shape his/her life like that of the secular world. The dedicated saint doesn’t allow his life to be controlled or dictated to by the ungodly world. Since the “fashion[s] of this world” are transitory and pass away (I Cor. 7:31), and the clothing styles reflect the secular ungodly trends of the age, the spiritual Christian NEVER permits the sensual dress (apparel) fashions of the day to reflect his/her life style!
10. OUR COMPREHENSIONS ARE NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM): In I Cor. 2:12 & 14, Paul wrote: “Now we have received, not the spirit of this world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God…But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he knew them because they are spiritually discerned.”
When the discerning believer hears/views the world’s nightly news on ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, etc., he/she automatically reinterprets much of what he/she hears. Why? Because the discerning saint doesn’t think like the unsaved, secular world thinks. Perceptive saints view local, national and world news through another perspective. We have a set of spiritual Biblical lens through which we view human events. While the event may the same human activity, we look at life’s activities via an eternal set of glasses.
11. OUR CONTEMPLATIONS ARE NOT OF THIE WORLD (SYSTEM): As Biblicist Christians, our hearts’ affections are not based on this world’s material items. We don’t live with earthly values in mind, but with heaven’s eternal treasures in view. We live in a sports-crazed world, where many individuals live with high school, college and professional athletics as their major theme and attraction. Betting on athletic games is at an all-time high and you can bet on-line or even spend thousands of dollars betting on “fantasy” sports that—in reality—don’t even exist!
In contrast to such earthly materialistic trends, Bible Christians emulate the instructional advice of the Apostle Paul in Col. 3:1-2 “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affections on things above, not on things of the earth.”
12. OUR COUNSEL IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM): As Biblicist Christians, we get our counsel from the cross, not from the couch! We seek needed counsel not from psychologists but from preachers. We don’t go to the world to obtain our advice, we go to the Word. We don’t get our spiritual advice from radio talk shows, we obtain it from Godly local church pastors. We don’t receive our guidance from secular seminars, but from scriptural sermons.
In Ps. 1:1-3, David, the beloved Psalmist, penned these verses of sound Scripture counsel when he wrote: “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, no standeth in the way of sinners, not sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”
In Ps. 74:24, Asaph penned these instructive words: “Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterwards receive to glory.” In the N. T., the Apostle James in chapter one, verse five, provided inspired instruction when he wrote: “If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”
13. OUR CONTENTMENT IS NOT OF THIE WORLD (SYSTEM): Many young couples today insist on having every new gadget and the latest piece of technological equipment NOW. They cannot wait for the latest technologically advanced refrigerators, ovens, heaters, air-conditioners, and new automobiles with the newest electronic technology. They borrow way beyond their abilities to repay, both work two jobs, send their children to day-care centers, purchase quarter-million dollar homes that that they cannot afford, and then spend all their time at home in a 12’ x 12’ room where they navigate their evenings roaming the internet spaces or wasting their time with social-based “NOTHINGS “on Facebook or twitter or some other new communication gimmick.
In contrast to the above generally wasted technology and social media, the Apostle Paul would humbly write in Phil. 4:11 that “I have learned in whatsoever state I am therewith to be content.” Paul had learned that the real issues that produce contentment and thanksgiving CANNOT be purchased with MONEY or credit cards as so many individuals think today.
14. OUR COUNTENANCE IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM): Just before our Lord returned to heaven and the glory of His Heavenly Father’s face, He stated in words that he uttered to His Heavenly Father in Acts 1:28: “Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.” Christ knew that when he returned to glory, that His Heavenly Father’s countenance would be filled with the look of joy because He had completely fulfilled His Father’s will on earth.
The work of salvation on the cross was complete. Jesus Christ had exactly and completely fulfilled His Heavenly Father’s purpose on this earth. Christ’s work on earth was completed and His Heavenly Father could smile with complete satisfaction knowing that Christ had accomplished ALL the Father’s will, without any taint of failure.
Believers who invest their lives in complete dedication to Christ also can be assured that their Heavenly Father’s face will manifest a similar satisfied countenance because of their consecrated service to their Saviour. Now there are a few more important items to note about Bible Christians and their non-relationships with this evil world system.
OUR MUSICAL RHYTHMS ARE NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM)
In Ps. 40:3, David the Psalmist discerningly wrote: “And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord.” The song that God gave to the sweet Psalmist was NOT the sordid old sensually based song of the world, it was the NEW song that discerning believers sing that is based on genuine praise to God, not counterfeit praise pawned off by worldly believers.
Now it is a musical fact that ALL good sound music, whether it is sacred or secular, has three component parts that appear in the following sequential order. (1) MELODY, the (2) HARMONY and the (3) RHYTHM-BEAT last. You have NEVER heard anyone singing a solo singing only the bass part or the alto part, and you never will! Why? Because the harmony always comes AFTER the melody and is based on that melody.
The world’s sounds, however, whether they be secular or religious, do NOT follow that pattern. They place the RHYTHM FIRST, with musical sounds that are out of order. Music that is OUT OF ORDER, emphasizes the physical senses first: Music that emphasizes the secret portions of the human body, and is thus sensual in its basic orientation.
OUR MONETARY RICHES ARE NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM)
While this truth has already been emphasized, perceptive believers do NOT place their spiritual stock in material riches as Matt. 6:19-20 plainly declare. In Phil. 4:19, the Apostle Paul contentedly wrote in Phil. 4:11: “…for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” While believers should be sensible caretakers of their human funds [Yes-this could be sound investment in money CD’s!], their daily contentment, joy and peace is NOT found in trusting in such investments.
Writing NOT about himself, but about the Philippian saints and their need to give to the poor saints elsewhere, Paul stated in Phil. 4:19: “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” While God surely desires that we pray about our own needs and trust Him for that needed supply, the context here in Phil. 4;19 is God’s supply of us to give to other believers in need.
OUR MINISTRY REWARD IS NOT OF THIS WORLD (SYSTEM)
For God’s saints, the final reward does NOT come during our time span on this earth, but after we enter Heaven’s gates, and ultimately at the Judgment Seat of Christ. Moses represents the human epitome of what our goal should be: In Heb. 11:24-26, it is recorded of him: “By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.”
Discerning believers are willing to wait for the rewards they will hopefully receive at the Judgment Seat of Christ, when the Lord will rightfully reward every saint according to both the spirit and manner in which he/she utilized their talent[s] for the Saviour—II Cor. 5:10.
SOME MORE SIGNIFICANT FACTS TO NOTE IN THIS STUDY
NO *ENDEARMENT TO THIS WORLD (SYSTEM)
In I John 2:15-17, the Apostle John, under divine inspiration, recorded the following words for ALL believers of all ages to consider: “Love not the world, neither the things that are in this world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever.”
The Apostle James strongly rebuked the materialistic sensual saints to whom he was writing when he pointedly declared in James 4:4: “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” *endearment=that to which you are especially close, specially love or close to your heart.
NO ENJOYMENT FROM THIS WORLD (SYSTEM)
Speaking about Moses, the author of Hebrews wrote in Heb. 10:25: “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures sin which last for a season.” This preacher/writer has the greatest time of his life as he ministers to the saints in independent Fundamental Baptist churches. His heart is filled to overflowing with great joy, as he fellowships with God’s saints and enjoys their sweet company. However, this blessed enjoyment is limited to biblically separatist saints who are obedient to God’s Word—I John 1:3 & 1:7.
NO ENTAGLEMENT IN THIS WORLD (SYSTEM)
In II Tim. 2:3-4, Paul strongly entreated saints to “…endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.” In this war with the world system, there are NO furloughs, NO alliances with the enemy, and NO discharges until death. As Dr. A. W. Tozer aptly once said, “The Christian life is a battleground, not a playground.”
Unfortunately, there are many former militant warriors of the cross who are NOW softening their spiritual trumpets and giving forth muted uncertain sounds. Some former warriors who used to militantly warn against the trends of the world are now warming to those trends.
SOME MORE BIBLICAL RESPONSES TO THE WORLD (SYSTEM
CRUCIFIXION TO THE WORLD (SYSTEM)
“But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of my Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.”
Crucifixion refers to death, in the context here, a death to the ungodly world! Unfortunately, many believers who should be totally dead to this world system are coming “alive” to it, making unscriptural accommodations and concessions to this evil system, even adopting and adapting to its unbiblical priorities and values. We now have a secularized form of Fundamental Baptists in many of our former militant circles.
CONDEMNATION OF THE WORLD (SYSTEM)
Noah was a valiant father, husband and warrior for the truth in an ungodly world and wicked age. Heb. 11:7 states that “By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.”From the above verse, it is obvious that Noah possessed a Biblical separatist testimony, as manifested by the building and use of this ark to save his family.
Noah manifested a consistent Biblical stance on personal and ecclesiastical separation, with his family as the chief evidence! Noah and his family were “in the world,” as they built that ark for 120 years, but they were never “of this world". The ark’s building was a clear condemnation of the world’s wicked condition.
CONTENTION AGAINST THE WORLD (SYSTEM)
In Eph. 6:12, Paul wrote: “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Paul’s words there are a clear indication that there is no such entity as the “positive gospel.” All genuine Gospel preaching thus contends against the false religious systems of every generation.
In I Thess. 2:2, Paul recalls his contentions against the false gospels of his generation: “But even after that we had suffered before and were shamefully entreated, as ye know before, at Philippi, we were bold in our God to speak the gospel of God with much contention.” The Apostle Paul never backed off from a necessary battle with the forces of unbelief. He faced them straight on and vigorously contested against the apostate forces of his day.
THREE MORE BIBLICAL RESPONSES TO THE WORLD (SYSTEM)
1. *UNDEFILED: Ps. 119:1: “Blessed are the undefiled who walk in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.” Rev. 21:27: “And there shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the lamb’s book of life.” *Undefiled: free from contamination; *defile: to pollute, to contaminate
2. *UNSPOTTED: James 1:27: “Pure religion and undefiled before god and the Father is this: to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction and to keep himself unspotted by the world. *Unspotted: unstained, without alteration.
3. *UNBLAMEABLE: Phil. 2:15: “That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation among ye shine as lights.” *blameless: without blame or rebuke. Not “faultless” SAINT here, only in heaven—Eph. 5:27, but “blameless” on earth.
SOME IMPORTANT CONCLUSIONS
1. The WORD and the WORLD are two contradictory systems that can NEVER be aligned, mixed, or combined in spiritual fellowship together. You can’t hang unto both systems at the same time—Matt. 6:24.
2. Lot’s Wife: “Remember Lot’s Wife”—Luke 17:12. While Lot’s wife was leaving Sodom, she looked back and continued to admire and desire its evil culture.
3. Demas: “Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world—II Tim. 4:10.”
QUESTION: WHAT IS A BIBLE CHRISTIAN?
A Bible Christian is simply an individual who is preparing for another world!
NOTE: Due to the fact that this sermons is presented in Bible Study format, the F.D. editor had to DELETE all illustrations. This study is an abbreviated form of one of his most popular evangelistic sermons in meetings!