185 – THE WORLD
What is the world? The world is the humankind. World are the peoples. World are the things that men think, feel, do. World are dreams, aspirations, vanities, and passions of men and women. World is what the majority of people thinks and lives. World is the way people live, independently, in spite of the law. World is the body of principles and phenomena considered as a whole: the world of fantasy: the secular life.
The New Testament condemns the world. “Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If any one loves 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 eye and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world” (1 John 2:15-16). The apostle John speaks from God the Father, and is full of the Holy Spirit, saying that the love with which men love the world does not come from the Father. In other words, if anyone has the love of the Father, he does not love the world. To love the world is to be seduced by three things: the desire of the flesh, the desire of the eyes and the pride of life.
James, in his universal epistle, exhorts those who admire this world, saying: “You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4). James makes it clear that this world is contrary and enemy to God, and that it is harmful to men. The system that rules this world is evil and wicked. John declares that this world is in the evil one. The best translation is that it lies in the evil one, that is, is fallen, overpowered, dead (1 John 5:19).
Now let us look at what Jesus says about this world: “The world cannot hate you; but it hates Me, because I testify of it, that its deeds are evil” (John 7:7). And Jesus makes a terrible declaration to the Jews. “You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world; I am not of this world” (John 8:23). With these words, Jesus reveals that he has nothing to do with this world, that is, the world is strange to him, and also to the Father, for they are both one, that is, whatever one of them says, the other also says. Whatever one of them does, the other also does. As we have said, the world is strange to Jesus and to the Father, but it is not strange to Satan, who, full of self-assurance, said to Jesus, trying him, showing him all the kingdoms of the earth: “I will give You all this domain and its glory; for it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. Therefore, if You worship before me, it shall all be Yours” (Luke 4:6-7). Jesus did not contradict Satan, and so this is proof that this world with its kingdoms, his glories, his science, his delights, his riches, it all comes from its owner, that is Satan.
When Jesus was arrested and taken to Pilates, he asked him, “You are the king of the Jews? (John 18:33). Jesus, answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting, that I might not be delivered up to the Jews” (John 18:36). This makes it very clear that, to Jesus and to the Father, this world is totally foreign. Jesus has nothing to do with this world, and as he came to do the will of the Father, the world is totally foreign to the Father also. This world is not foreign but to Satan and to Jehovah. Let us read the Holy Scriptures:
1. “The earth is Jehovah’s, and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell in it” (Ps. 24:1).James says that to love the world is a form of adultery (James 4:4). John says that whoever loves the world deviates from God (1 John 2:15-16). And David affirms that the world and all its inhabitants belong to Jehovah? Things do not agree.
2. Jesus takes the disciples out of the world. “I have given them Thy word, and the world has hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world” (John 17:14). The same Jesus says that the works of the world are evil (John 7:7); and Jehovah sets the world into the heart of men? “He has made everything appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart” (Eccl. 3:11). Jehovah sets the things of Satan in the hearts of men? Is Jehovah with Jesus or with Satan?
3. Jesus answered to Pilates that his kingdom is not of this world, but Jehovah is the king of this world. “For God is the King of all earth; sing praises with a skillful psalm. God reigns over the nations” (Ps. 47:7-8).
4. The apostle John affirms that this world will pass away, with its desires (1 John 2:17). And Jehovah reigns over the nations, and declares that the world will be established so that it does not move (Ps. 96:10). In Psalm 93:1 we read, “Jehovah reigns, He has clothed and girded Himself with strength; indeed, the world is firmly established, it will not be moved.” And he continues, “Tremble before Him, all the earth; indeed the world is firmly established, it will not be moved” (1 Chr. 16:16-30). “From men with Thy hand, O Jehovah, from men of the world, whose portion is in this life; and whose belly Thou dost fill with Thy treasure; they are satisfied with children, and leave their abundance to their babes” (Ps. 17:14). This Psalm makes it clear that the children of this world belong to Jehovah, and are abundantly blessed. Jehovah promised to deliver his people seventy years after the Babylonian captivity (Jer. 29:10). After the seventy years were passed, Jehovah raised the Messiah. Who was the Messiah that Jehovah raised up, and who assured the rebuilding of the temple of Jerusalem, and the rebuilding of the city and the walls for the return of the people, which did not happen? The messiah was Cyrus, the king of the Persian people, of the Mazdeist religion, the religion of Zoroaster, the religion of the magicians. Cyrus was a bloody king, which was not related to the Jewish people. Isaiah spoke in the name of Jehovah: “Confirming the word of His servant, and performing the purpose of His messengers, it is I who says of Jerusalem, ‘She shall be inhabited!’ And of the cities of Judah, ‘They shall be built.’ And I will raise up her ruins again. It is I who says to the depth of the sea, ‘Be dried up!’ And I will make your rivers dry. It is I who says of Cyrus, ‘He is My shepherd! And he will perform all My desire.’ And he declares of Jerusalem, ‘She will be built.’ and of the temple, ‘Your foundation will be laid.’” (Is. 44:26-28). “Thus says Jehovah to Cyrus His anointed, whom I have taken by the right hand, to subdue nations before him, and to loose the loins of kings; to open doors before him” (Is. 45:1). Cyrus declares that Jehovah gave him all the kingdoms of the world, and also put him in charge of the edification of the temple (2 Chr. 36:22-23). Forty years before that, Jehovah had handed all the kingdoms of the world in Nebuchadnezzar’s hands, his servant, who was pleasing in his eyes (Jer. 27:5-8). And he declared that if any nation would not bend their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, the very Jehovah would destroy that people by the famine, by the sword, and by the pestilence. This happened in the year 587 BC. Less than seventy years later, Jehovah handed all the kingdoms of the world to Cyrus, the Persian. Later, he gave them to the Greeks, and after them, to the Romans. The problem with Jehovah is that he is the king of this world, as we have shown above. And, if he is the king of this world, he is also the god of this world, who clouds the understanding of the unbelievers so that they do not see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ (2 Cor. 4:4). This is not any news, for it was Jehovah who blinded Israel so that they would not repent and be healed (Is. 6:10). And Jesus declared that Jehovah blinded Israel so that they would not believe in the Gospel. “But though He had performed so many signs before them, yet they were not believing in Him; that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spoke, ‘Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?’ For this cause they could not believe, for Isaiah said again, ‘He has blinded their eyes, and He hardened their heart; lest they see with their eyes, and perceive with their heart, and be converted, and I heal them’” (John 12:37-40). Isaiah said this when he saw his glory and spoke of him (John 12:41).
By Pastor Olavo Silveira Pereira