Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 1 John 2:15
Do not love the world. Boy, is that ever a tough one. And convicting.
Sure, there are plenty of things in this world that make my stomach turn, my skin crawl, or even just don't get me very excited. Things I'd gladly do without.
These thing I do not love. If John had said "do not love the icky things of the world," I would have been on easy street. Pleasing the Lord in this way would have been no problem. I probably could have done it on my own.
And that, in itself, is a clue to the faultiness of this logic. For we can do nothing for God on our own. It is only with the power of His Spirit that we can please the Lord.
"The world" as expressed in this verse is exactly what it says: everything, and everyone, on this planet. And some of these things are easy to love.
- A heartwarming/exciting/fill-in-the-blank movie
- Good food
- Money in the bank
- A nice car
- A shiny laptop
- Thin Mints
So, I'm not allowed to love these things? Yikes. These can all be good things, can't they? What is wrong with them?
Actually, not much–as long as we don't put too much of a focus on them. If I love, say, my car enough that it changes my focus, it's a problem. If I see it as something "I" have, it's a problem. But, if I look at all these things I love through God's eyes, and His sovereignty and provision, I am loving the Provider, and not the objects themselves.
For anything I put ahead of God (even Thin Mints) is an idol – a false God. And God doesn't allow split loyalties. Our love for Him must be supreme.
If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
Couldn't have said it better myself.