Today the Lord took me down a route of understanding in what it means to not be of this world. It started with a verse from my current book of study in 2nd Corinthians and then though the Thompson Chain reference, took me on a small journey of other supporting verses. So, lets start with the verse in 2 Corinthians 6 which is verse 17.
2 Corinthians 6:17 [AMP]
So, come out from among [unbelievers], and separate (sever) yourselves from them, says the Lord, and touch not [any] unclean thing; then I will receive you kindly and treat you with favor,
Like I was saying yesterday, at first glance this seems to be a super hard and fast instruction from Paul to entirely separate ourselves from unbelievers. However, there is more theology here we need to unpack. Jesus, through His great commission sends us out into the world to teach the world about Him and His Gospel. Everything Jesus did to received people to Himself was through relationship and even the missionaries we send out focus heavily on developing relationships with unbelievers in order to nurture an opportunity to tell someone the gospel.
So the next verses I was led to was Colossians 2:21&22
Colossians 2:21-22 [AMP]
Do not handle [this], Do not taste [that], Do not even touch [them],
Referring to things all of which perish with being used. To do this is to follow human precepts and doctrines.
Essentially, do not follow the desires of the flesh. Let’s keep going though; the next verse I was pointed was 3 John 1:11.
3 John 1:11 [AMP]
Beloved, do not imitate evil, but imitate good. He who does good is of God; he who does evil has not seen (discerned or experienced) God [has enjoyed no vision of Him and does not know Him at all].
This is pretty self explanatory and does not require anything additional to be said in my opinion and means what it says. Next up we have 1 John 2:15
1 John 2:15 [AMP]
Do not love or cherish the world or the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him.
So this goes more hand in hand with Colossians 2:21&22 above. If our hearts are more fond of the world than what the Lord has shown us to be true in His word about Himself and the way He feels about the world, then we don’t have the love of the Father in us. The last verse I was brought to before I landed on my final passage was 1 John 3:10.
1 John 3:10 [AMP]
By this it is made clear who take their nature from God and are His children and who take their nature from the devil and are his children: no one who does not practice righteousness [who does not conform to God’s will in purpose, thought, and action] is of God; neither is anyone who does not love his brother (his fellowbeliever in Christ).
This passage follows right in line with the passage before. So not only will we not love the world but our nature will be desiring to do righteousness and not evil. I know I am moving fast but this coming passage is the one that pulls it all together. John 17:15-21 -> with everything I have said above, I am just going to now let you read through and listen to what the Lord lays on your heart. This is Jesus’ prayer to the Father before being betrayed. POWERFUL!!
John 17:15-21 [AMP]
I do not ask that You will take them out of the world, but that You will keep and protect them from the evil one.
They are not of the world (worldly, belonging to the world), [just] as I am not of the world.
Sanctify them [purify, consecrate, separate them for Yourself, make them holy] by the Truth; Your Word is Truth.
Just as You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world.
And so for their sake and on their behalf I sanctify (dedicate, consecrate) Myself, that they also may be sanctified (dedicated, consecrated, made holy) in the Truth.
Neither for these alone do I pray [it is not for their sake only that I make this request], but also for all those who will ever come to believe in (trust in, cling to, rely on) Me through their word and teaching,
That they all may be one, [just] as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be one in Us, so that the world may believe and be convinced that You have sent Me.