HOW TO LIVE IN TWO WORLDS
May 5, 2022
HOW TO LIVE IN TWO WORLDS
2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1
God wants Christians to live in a different world!
Introduction: There is a story about a Christian woman raising her son. Helen was a wonderful Christian woman. She was a single mother raising her only son, Tom, as best she could to love God. Helen was very worried when Tom told her he was moving to the Big City. A year went by and all seemed well when Tom called his mother one day and told her, his friend Sarah was moving in with him. Tom told his mom not to worry and they would just be roommates, it was strictly platonic. Helen knew if she could spend just a little time with them together, she would know just how platonic it was. She soon got her chance as she was invited over for dinner. All went well until about two weeks later. Sarah came to Tom and said, “Tom, I’m not saying she took it and I’m not saying she didn’t. The fact of the matter is, my silver gravy ladle has been missing ever since your mother left”. So, Tom called his mother and left this message on her machine. “Mom, I’m not saying you took it and I’m not saying you didn’t, but the fact of the matter is, ever since you left two weeks ago, Sarah’s silver ladle has been missing”. The next day Tom’s mother called and told Tom. “Tom, I’m not saying you’re sleeping with Sarah and I’m not saying you’re not. The fact of the matter is, if she was sleeping in her own bed, she would have found that gravy ladle.
God’s children are different. We are not like worldly people. Tommy C. Higle said, “When we become Christians, a radical transformation takes place in our lives, and we become new creations in Christ (5:17).” Our old lifestyle changes to the new lifestyle, which is in Christ Jesus. How to live in two worlds requires three actions.
I. BELIEVERS NOT TO BE UNEQUALLY YOKED WITH UNBLIEVERS (v. 14-16)
The reasons are clearly stated: believers are different from unbelievers, ever so different. Just how different is seen in the word “unequally yoked”. It refers back to the Old Testament where God forbade the plowing of an ox with an ass (Dt. 22:10), or the union of different kinds of animal (Lev. 19:19). Yoked means hitched up with another animal who is not the same. An ox is much stronger than an ass (donkey) when it comes to pulling. Their character is so different.
· The union of a genuine believer with an unbeliever would be as difficult as the union between two kinds of animals.
· The plowing through life of a believer with an unbeliever would be as difficult as the plowing of a field with an ox and an ass yoked together.
Genuine believers are radically different from unbelievers. Five areas clearly reveal the fact.
A. Believers differ from unbelievers in fellowship. “What fellowship does righteousness have with unrighteousness?” Unbelievers have not and do not obey God. We are totally opposite than an unbeliever.
B. Believers differ from unbelievers in communion. “What communion does light have with darkness?” The word “communion” (koinonia) means to be in union, partnership, in a bound fellowship, to be closely bound together. Light refers to spiritual understanding and light is spiritual ignorance. Light and darkness cannot coexist.
C. Believers differ from unbelievers in harmony. “What concord does Christ have with Belial?” Belial refers to Satan. If a person does not follow Christ, then Scripture says he is following Belial or Satan (1 Cor. 10:21). Therefore, it is impossible for a genuine believer to live in concord or harmony with those who follow Satan.
D. Believers differ from unbelievers in partnership. “What part does he who believes have with an infidel?” You can not be a partner with someone that might compromise our Christian morals.
E. Believers differ from unbelievers in worship. What agreement does the temple of God have with idols. There can be no agreement, no union, and no bond whatsoever between the temple of God and idols. Idolatry, above all else, is despised by God, for an idol is the substitute god of a man. Wherever a person puts his primary time, energy, and money and allegiance is where his heart and worship are. The believer worships the true and living God.
II. BELIEVERS TO COME OUT FROM UNBELIEVERS AND BE SEPARATE (v. 17-18)
These two verses are a quote from the Old Testament (Is. 52:11-12). When God led Israel out of the Babylonian captivity, He told them to leave everything behind. They were to take nothing out of the defiled land, for they were to begin a totally new life under His leadership.
A. First, believers are to come out from among unbelievers and be separate. What does this mean? Believers are not to isolate themselves from unbelievers. It does not mean that believers have nothing to do with unbelievers---never talking, sharing, or associating with them. Both believers and unbelievers are in the world, and they have to share the world together. But we keep ourselves from the immorality of the world
1. Believers differ from unbelievers (v. 14-16).
a. In fellowship
b. In communion
c. In Harmony
d. In partnership
e. In worship
2. Believers are not to touch the unclean thing. Believers are not to live as the sinners of the world. They are not to participate in the sins of unbelievers.
B. Second, separation is a command of God Himself. “Be ye separate, saith the Lord” (v. 17)
C. Third, the results of separation are great.
God gives two wonderful promises
1. God will receive us.
2. God will be a Father to us. “And ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”
Believers are in the world, but they are not to be of the world.
III. BELIEVERS TO CLEANSE THEMSELVES FROM UNBELIEVERS AND BE HOLY (v. 7:1)
God gives two of the most wonderful promises imaginable (6:18): to receive us and adopt us as His sons and daughters. Therefore, God expects two things from us.
A. God expects us to cleanse ourselves from all filthiness and to perfect holiness. Filthiness refers to moral contamination. We have to watch how we walk and talk in this world.
B. God expects us to perfect holiness in the fear of God. Note that this is continuous action. The word “perfecting” is an aggressive word demanding aggressive action. The believer is, of course, to practice holiness. He is to practice things that will make him holy (1 Pt. 1:15-16). The motive for holiness: the fear of God. If we are smart, we will obey God!
Responsive Reading: 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1