“Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever. Dear children, the last hour is here. You have heard that the Antichrist is coming, and already many such antichrists have appeared. From this we know that the last hour has come. These people left our churches, but they never really belonged with us; otherwise they would have stayed with us. When they left, it proved that they did not belong with us. But you are not like that, for the Holy One has given you His Spirit, and all of you know the truth. So, I am writing to you not because you don’t know the truth but because you know the difference between truth and lies. And who is a liar? Anyone who says that Jesus is not the Christ. Anyone who denies the Father and the Son is an antichrist. Anyone who denies the Son does not have the Father, either. But anyone who acknowledges the Son has the Father also. So, you must remain faithful to what you have been taught from the beginning. If you do, you will remain in fellowship with the Son and with the Father. And in this fellowship, we enjoy the eternal life He promised us. I am writing these things to warn you about those who want to lead you astray. But you have received the Holy Spirit, and He lives within you, so you do not need anyone to teach you what is true. For the Spirit teaches you everything you need to know, and what He teaches is true – it is not a lie. So just as He has taught you, remain in fellowship with Christ. And now, dear children, remain in fellowship with Christ so that when He returns, you will be full of courage and not shrink back from Him in shame. Since we know that Christ is righteous, we also know that all who do what is right are God’s children.”
1 John 2:15-29
We live in a world of compromise – one thing gets surrendered so that something else can be gained. Some compromises are good, such as giving up our desire to watch television when our children ask us to play a game with them. However, some compromise is not, when it comes to issues of morality, integrity, obedience to God, or the truth of Scripture. The price is unbearably high when we think we can play that game. But sadly, many do.
Every one of us has a battle going on within. But as a follower of Christ, we have the Holy Spirit, dwelling within us, convicting us (John16:8), calling us to obedience (John 16:13), and teaching us His truth (John 14:17). However, there is also a fleshly part of us that longs for selfish pleasures and values the priorities of this fallen world (Romans 7). Now, as much as we want to straddle this fence between the flesh and the Spirit, we cannot. James tells us that “friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God” (James 4:4).
You see, when we compromise, we get ourselves into trouble. We may not notice it at first, but stepping beyond the boundary of obedience has long-lasting effects. I heard it said that the little sins lead to big troubles. For you see, each concession makes the next one that much easier. First, the devil starts with a toehold, which soon becomes a foothold, and ultimately, a stronghold – as God will allow us to reap what we have sown (Galatians 6:7).
So, instead of sitting on the fence, make up our minds now, to follow the Lord wholeheartedly, without reserve, and experience the blessings of a life fully devoted to Jesus.