The two poles could sooner meet, than the love of Christ and the love of the world.
Worldliness is a spirit, a temperament, an attitude of the soul. It is a life without high callings, life devoid of lofty ideals. It is a gaze always horizontal and never vertical.
You may have wealth. It cannot profit long. You may have health. Decay will cause its flower to fade. You may have strength. It soon will totter to the grave. You may have honors. A breath will blast them. You may have flattering friends. They are but as a summer brook. These boasted joys often now cover an aching heart, but they never gave a grain of solid peace; they never healed a wounded conscience; they never won approving looks from God; they never crushed the sting of sin.
If there lurks in most modern minds the notion that to desire our own good and earnestly hope for the enjoyment of it is a bad thing, I submit that this notion has crept in from Kant and the Stoics and is no part of the Christian faith. Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling around with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in the slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.
Prosperity knits a man to the World. He feels that is "finding his place in it," while really it is finding its place in him.
Christ’s kingdom people are not to reflect the world but they are to influence the world; they are to be in it but not of it.
[Worldliness is] the mindset of the unregenerate.
Our Lord calls us out of the world; while living in it, we are not to be stained by it (James 1:27). We are to be in it but not to love it (Duncan Rankin).
When you become so blind that the maker of galaxies and ruler of nations and knower of all mysteries and lover of our souls becomes boring, then only one thing is left — the love of the world. For the heart is always restless. It must have its treasure: if not in heaven, then on the earth.
Used by Permission, Sermon: Malachi 1:6-14, November 1, 1987, www.DesiringGod.org, Used by Permission.
[James 4:3-5] pictures the church as the wife of God. God has made us for Himself and has given Himself to us for our enjoyment. Therefore it is adultery when we try to be “friends” with the world. If we seek from the world the pleasures we should seek in God, we are unfaithful to our marriage vows. And, what’s worse, when we go to our Heavenly Husband and actually pray for the resources with which to commit adultery with the world, it is a very wicked thing. It is as though we should ask our husband for money to hire male prostitutes to provide the pleasure we don’t find in Him!
Desiring God, 1996, p. 141, Used by Permission, www.DesiringGod.org. Get this book!
There will be no people in heaven who want to be around their things more than Jesus.
To be in the world, and yet not of the world; to use it for our temporal necessities, and yet not to abuse it for carnal purposes, is a high Christian attainment. May we be graciously delivered from a worldly spirit, which can assume a thousand forms to allure and to deceive.
The Christian is the most contented man in the world, but he is the least contented with the world. He is like a traveler in an inn, perfectly satisfied with the inn and its accommodation, considering it as an inn, but putting quite out of all consideration the idea of making it his home.
I believe that one reason why the church of God at this present moment has so little influence over the world is because the world has so much influence over the church.
Quoted by Curtis C. Thomas, Practical Wisdom for Pastors, Crossway Books, 2001, p. 131. Used by Permission.
The Christian life is a positive allegiance to Jesus Christ. It is becoming so occupied with Him that the values and standards of the world around us have little influence.
Pleasure, profit, preferment are the worldling’s trinity.
A Puritan Golden Treasury, compiled by I.D.E. Thomas, by permission of Banner of Truth, Carlisle, PA. 2000, p. 310.
I counted dollars, while God counted crosses;
I counted gains, while God counted losses.
I counted my worth, my things gained in store;
And He sized me up by the scars that I bore.
I counted honors and sought degrees,
He counted the hours I spent on my knees.
I never knew until one day by the grave
How vain are the things that we spend life to save.
Worldliness is what any particular culture does to make sin look normal and righteousness look strange.
The problem with Christians is nobody wants to kill them anymore.
Christians are to be in the world, but not of the world, positively living out their faith in their various vocations in the “secular” realm and influencing it for the good, while remembering that their ultimate citizenship is in heaven.
All the danger is when the world gets into the heart. The water is useful for the sailing of the ship; all the danger is when the water gets into the ship; so the fear is when the world gets into the heart.
A Puritan Golden Treasury, compiled by I.D.E. Thomas, by permission of Banner of Truth, Carlisle, PA. 2000, p. 313.
The standard of practical holy living has been so low among Christians that very often the person who tries to practice spiritual disciplines in everyday life is looked upon with disapproval by a large portion of the Church. And for the most part, the followers of Jesus Christ are satisfied with a life so conformed to the world, and so like it in almost every respect, that to a casual observer, there is no difference between the Christian and the pagan.