JUNE 20

 

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him—1 John 2: 15.

 

To fellowship the world is to walk in harmony with its ideas and to conform to its ways. In this sense we may not love it, but must be apart from it and in opposition to it. The way thus pointed out to us is, in some respects at least, a difficult way, and a lonely way, but it is the only way of peace and happiness. This world with the lust thereof is rapidly passing away; it is hollow and unsatisfying and eventually leads to disaster and ruin; but those who delight in the Lord's way have blessed communion and fellowship with Him. Their joys come from a source which the world cannot comprehend. They live on a higher plane, breathe a purer atmosphere and enjoy a holier, sweeter friendship than the world could ever offer.

 

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The world is the present order of affairs. The things of this world are its various parts and sentiments. To love these would imply sympathy with evil. No child of God could be in sympathy with the present order of affairs, its parts and sentiments, and yet be filled and controlled by the Lord's Spirit, which mainly is the love of God. The Divine love, controlling our conduct, makes us long for the order of affairs that will prevail during the next dispensation; and it will certainly restrain us from loving this world and the things of this world.

 

Parallel passages: Matt. 6: 24; Luke 14: 26; Rom. 12: 2; 8: 5; Gal. 1: 4; 6: 14; Jas. 4: 4, 14; 1John 2: 16, 17; 3: 1, 11-18; 4: 7-21; Psa. 119: 37; 39: 6; 1Cor. 7: 31; 1Pet. 1: 24;  1Cor. 13.

 

Questions: How did the love of God this week cast out from my heart love for the world? What helped or hindered therein? What was the result?

 

WHOM WILL YE SERVE?

 

John 19: 12, 13.

 

CASESAR'S friends? or friends of Jesus?

Solemn question for to-day!

Friends of Caesar! Friends of Jesus!

Take your sides without delay.

If ye pause for man's forbidding,

Caesar's friendship ye secure;

If ye do the Father's bidding,

Scorn, reproach, ye shall endure.

 

Friends of Caesar! Friends of Jesus!

Stand revealed! your choice declare!

Who in truth two masters pleases?

Who may rival banners bear?

Jesus' friends account Him precious,

Lose for Him all other gain:

Dearer far the smile of Jesus

Than the praise of worldly men.

 

Free from Caesar, friends of Jesus!

Stand in phalanx! never fear!

Love, severely tried, increases;

Courage yet! The Lord is near!

Onward still, His name confessing,

Weaving crowns to grace His brow;

Lo! His hands are full of blessing,

Lifted for your succor now.

 

Caesar's friends were we, but Jesus

Owns us for His friends to-day!

What! Shall rival friendship please us,

While the Bridegroom is away?

No! through grace would we surrender

Caesar's things to Caesar's care,

whilst to God, our God, we render

Filial homage, praise, and prayer.

 

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