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A Craving For Physical Pleasure…
1 John 2:16 What the world offers is the antithesis of godliness
“For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.”
1 John 2:16 NLT
In the second chapter of 1 John, the Apostle writes about what hinders believers from fellowship with God, and then he segues into the issue of worldliness. John clearly sees that the things of this world are what turn us away from God.
The NASB 1995 translation of the Bible puts this verse in a different light: “For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.” In many ways, this translation is much clearer than that of the NLT, which is why it’s always a good practice to refer to more than one translation of the Bible!
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Each of these sins comes under the spotlight of John for consideration. By the lust of the flesh, he not only targets the obvious sexual immorality in the world, but any overindulgence in this life — overeating (gluttony), alcoholism, drug abuse, even addiction to physical fitness and making yourself “look better”! In the Garden of Eden, Eve succumbed to the thought of just how tasty the forbidden fruits would be…
The lust of the eyes? That constant desire to acquire those flashy things or experiences that are pushed on us in advertising. Using Eve as an example again, the fruit appealed to her sense of the aesthetic as a pretty, and desirable, object.
What about the pride of life? That’s the proclivity to put oneself ahead of others, judging your achievements or acquisitions against the rest of the world. Eve set the dubious standard in Genesis, thinking that eating the fruit would make her wise and admirable in the eyes of Adam…
Bible commentator David Guzik offers metrics that can be used to judge our thinking against worldliness or godliness:
We usually believe that we think much more Biblically than we really do. We should rigorously measure our habits of thinking and see if they follow more the world or God our Father.
· Think of your standard for success: is it worldly or godly? Would you consider the apostle Paul a failure or a success?
· Think of your standard for what makes a person of the opposite sex appealing. Is it a worldly standard or a godly standard?
· Think of your standard for spirituality: is it worldly or godly? There is a worldly spirituality out there, and many people embrace it.
Do your personal standards measure up to worldliness or godliness? Today is the day to recommit to pleasing God, not yourself or the world.
Heaven On Wheels Daily Prayer:
Father in Heaven, thank You for the gift of the Apostle John’s important warnings about being influenced by worldly things. Keep my eyes focused on Jesus, and my heart and mind devoted to You. Help me to reject the lusts of life, and to not succumb to the enticements of the world, the flesh, and the Enemy. I pray that I may remain obedient to Your Word, renouncing evil until the day I pass from this Earth. In Jesus’ holy name I pray, AMEN.