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September 12, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Then the high priest tore his clothes, saying, ‘He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look, now you have heard His blasphemy!’”—Matthew 26:65 (NKJV)
When it comes to spiritual things, the Christian needs to be careful! Every follower of Christ must remember that they’re continually submerged in an environment that God’s Word refers to as “the world.” This word world doesn’t just refer to the physical planet earth we all occupy, it’s talking about something much bigger!
The world, as Scripture defines it, is essentially the collective value system of unredeemed humanity. In simpler terms, it’s what those who don’t know the Lord believe, value, and promote. It’s what you get when you remove God from the equation . . . and it goes without saying that we who are in Christ and the world are on dramatically different pages!
This will never be more evident than where Christ is concerned. Our understanding of Jesus and the world are at odds, and they always will be. It has always been so, even as far back as when Jesus walked amidst this world. We see this in the above passage from Matthew’s Gospel, as the religious rulers accused Jesus of being a blasphemer. They leveled this charge because Jesus claimed things that only God, Himself, was allowed to claim. Their spiritual antennae went up, as it should have.
The problem was they got Jesus wrong! They (as the world does) didn’t see Jesus for who He truly is. So they wrongly accused Him of evil and even brought Him before Pilate to be executed: “Pilate then went out to them and said, ‘What accusation do you bring against this Man?’ They answered and said to him, ‘If He were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you’” (John 18:29–30 NKJV).
We need to understand that the world around us isn’t going to get Jesus right. It won’t because it can’t. Spiritual blindness prevents the world from seeing Christ correctly. It will inaccurately assess and falsely accuse Him, just as the Pharisees did. If we don’t recognize this, we will be open to receiving the world’s version of Jesus . . . erroneous and false views.
This shouldn’t lead us to paranoia or isolation, but rather awareness and discernment. God wants us to rub off on the world, not the other way around—especially when it comes to who Jesus is. May He fill us with His Spirit to do exactly that!
DIG: What is the world? How is the world most at odds with followers of Christ?
DISCOVER: What effect should this understanding produce in the Christian?
DISPLAY: Pray for those in the world today. Pray the Lord would use you to rub off on the world, to show people the truth about Jesus.
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.