Series: The Gospel of John
Series: The Gospel of John
Title: The Lord’s Prayer, Pt. 3: What in the World is Worldliness?
Text: John 17: 13-19
Purpose: By studying these verses we are reminded that: Christians are to relate to the world as Jesus did: to be in it,
but to be distinct from it.
Speaker: Bishop Jake Givan, Jr. D. Min.
Date: June, 28, 2020
It is important to understand biblically what worldliness is and what it is not. “World” (Greek = cosmos) is a favorite word for John,
who uses it 78 times in his Gospel (including 9 times in our text), 24 times in his epistles, and 3 times in Revelation. It is only used 85
other times in the New Testament, 47 of which are in Paul’s writings. It originally meant “order,” and it came to refer to the universe
as the well-ordered creation of God. It may refer to the physical world (John 1:10) or to the people of the world (John 3:16; 1 John 2:
2). In those senses, there is nothing wrong with loving the world. We should enjoy God’s creation and we should love worldly
people who need to know the Savior.
But John also uses the word to refer to the evil, organized system under Satan, which operates through unbelieving people who are
opposed to God. He writes (1 John 5:19), “We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.”
Jesus spoke of the world hating both Him and those who follow Him (John 7:7; 15:18-19). The world operates on the basis of
ungodly thoughts, attitudes, motives, values, and goals. It does not seek to promote God’s glory or to submit to His lordship. It is in
this sense that we must not love the world. Here in Jesus’ prayer we learn that …
Christians are to relate to the world as Jesus did: to be in it, but to be distinct from it.
1. Christians are to be in the world, as Jesus was in it.
A. Jesus was in the world, not isolated from worldly people.
B. Jesus was in the world with a divine mission.
C. Jesus was in the world with a realistic mindset: He expected opposition.
2. Christians are to be distinct from the world as Jesus was distinct from it.
A. To be distinct from the world is the path to genuine joy, not to depriving you of all your fun.
B. To be distinct from the world, you must have a separate origin.
C. To be distinct from the world, you must develop a separate mindset that comes from God’s Word.
D. To be distinct from this world, live in obedience to God’s Word.
E. To be distinct from this world, realize that you are in enemy territory.
Each of us needs to apply our Lord’s words in our text according to our own needs. Some, like me, need to be more in the world.
I’m too isolated. I can’t bear witness if I don’t have contact with worldly people. Others may need to be more distinct from the
world. You can’t bear witness if you live just as the world lives. We should relate to the world as our Savior did: to be in it, but
distinct from it.
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