under a special agreement with
presents Explorers Series 2
under a special agreement with
Lesson 7: My Enemy, "the World"
A Christian is a person who has taken the Lord Jesus as his Savior and is on the narrow road that leads to Heaven. This is wonderful, but the road to Heaven will not be easy.
We have three terrible enemies—"the world, the flesh, and the devil". Let us consider the enemy called "the world."
The Bible uses the word "world" in three ways.
First, it can refer to the earth, which God created. (See Genesis 1:1.) The earth is not our enemy.
Second, it can refer to people, as in John 3:16, "For God so loved the world…" People are not our enemy.
A third use is found in 1 John 2:15, where the believer is warned, "Do not love the world, neither the things that are in the world…" Here, "the world" refers to Satan's "world-system." This is our enemy! This is what we mean by "the world" in this lesson.
In the beginning, God put Adam in charge of the world. But Adam chose to rebel against God. When he did this, he took sides with Satan and came under Satan's rule.
The rulership of the world passed out of Adam's hands and into Satan's hands. Adam brought the whole human race into Satan's kingdom and under his rule. Satan allows people to be in charge of things in the world, but he himself is the real ruler of the world. The Bible calls him "the god [ruler] of this world" (2 Corinthians 4:4).
Even though Satan had the human race in his kingdom, he still had a problem. His problem was how to keep people in his kingdom. There was a way to escape. Those who believed on Jesus escaped from Satan's kingdom.
Satan did not like this, so he came up with a plan. He organized the things of this life into a "world-system," based on money, sinful pleasure, lust, selfishness, greed, and pride. There is nothing of God in these things.
Satan controls his evil world-system, and he uses the attractive things of his world-system to deceive and destroy young people. He deceives them into using drugs, alcohol, and tobacco. Satan uses filthy music, dirty TV shows, and sexy movies to put wrong thoughts into their minds and get them involved in sex. He convinces teenagers to rebel against their parents. Satan has many ways of destroying children and teens, and he wants to destroy you! The Bible says that Satan walks about as a roaring lion "seeking whom he may devour [destroy]" (1 Peter 5:8).
What is the world-system like? It hates God, it hates God's Son, and it hates God's people. For this reason, God will one day completely destroy Satan's world-system.
This world has been ruined by sin, but God has a new "world" for those who love Him. It is called "the kingdom of God's dear Son." The Lord Jesus is the King of God's new world.
Because the Lord Jesus loves His believers, He would not leave us in Satan's evil world-system. The Bible says, "…[Christ] gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father" (Galatians 1:4).
The Bible tells me that, when I took the Lord Jesus as my Savior, God took me out of Satan's kingdom of darkness and put me into "the kingdom of His dear Son." I am no longer in Satan's world-system. The Bible says,
"Giving thanks unto the Father…who has delivered us from the power [kingdom] of darkness, and has translated us [put us] into the kingdom of His dear Son" (Colossians 1:12-13).
In His Word, God tells me how to have victory over the world-system:
1. Do not love the world.
God does not want me to love the world or the attractive things of the world. The Bible says,
"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him" (1 John 2:15).
Satan's world-system is God's enemy. You must choose whether you will be God's friend or a friend of the world. You cannot be both. The Bible says,
"…Whoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God" (James 4:4).
2. Separate yourself from ungodly people.
God wants His people to be separate from ungodly, worldly people. He says,
"Come out from among them, and be separate…and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and you shall be My sons and daughters…" (2 Corinthians 6:17-18).
God is saying to us, "If you will keep yourself from the sinful things of the world, I will be a Father to you, and I will love you and take care of you." That is much better than being a friend of Satan's world-system.
3. Learn how to say "No!"
When people try to get you to do things that you know are wrong for you as a Christian, tell them plainly, "I cannot do that. Jesus is my Savior and my Best Friend, and He would not want me to do that."
They may make fun of you, but secretly some will admire you for your courage. And some day you may have the privilege of winning them to Christ.
4. Make Christian friends.
You will become like those whom you choose as your close friends. If you are a new Christian, probably most of your friends are unsaved. This means that you need to make new friends—friends who love Jesus.
5. Remember that Jesus is always with you.
Wherever you go, you take Jesus with you. Whatever you watch, Jesus watches it with you. Whatever you listen to, Jesus listens to it also. If you really love Him, you will not do things that hurt His heart.
1. Satan is the unseen ruler of his evil world-system, which hates God, hates God's Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, and hates God's people.
2. When I took the Lord Jesus as my Savior, God took me out of Satan's kingdom and put me in Christ's kingdom.
3. God wants me to separate myself from ungodly, worldly people. I can love them and try to win them to Christ, but I am not to live like them and do the sinful things they do.
"Father, thank You that Jesus has delivered me from Satan's world-system. I do not want to love the world, nor the things that are in the world. I want to love You, and love your Son. In His name I pray."
The "Whatever Verse"
The story so far…
Jared failed to convince Carlos not to go fishing with Alex and his gang. Jared visited Dan in the hospital. Dan asked if he had to be in church to receive Jesus as his Savior.
Jared wrinkled his brow in thought. He was excited that Dan would want to be a Christian. "No, you do not have to be in church to be saved. My Aunt Emily told me people can pray and ask Jesus to save them no matter where they are. Do you want to ask Jesus to be your Savior, Dan?"
Dan nodded. He closed his eyes and quietly began to pray, "Dear Jesus, I am sorry for all the bad things I have done. I'm so sorry for being…so…mean to kids at school. Please forgive me and come into my heart and be my Savior. And I sure would like it if You would be my special Friend too, Jesus." Dan paused for a minute and then added, "Thank You, Lord Jesus. Thanks a lot."
When Dan opened his eyes, they sparkled with delight. "Things will be all right now, Jared," he said.
Just then the nurse opened the door. She told Jared that visiting hours were over and for him to come visit again.
On his way home, Jared stopped by to talk to Beth. She clapped her hands with delight when Jared told her the wonderful news about Dan. "Oh, I am so glad I sent him my Good Shepherd picture. I think it helped, don't you, Jared?"
"I know it did," Jared agreed. "He liked it a lot and was still holding it when I left the hospital."
Monday morning, Jared was uneasy after the announcements. The principal asked for information concerning the trespassing and property damage that had occurred over the weekend on the McDougal property. He went on to say, "Dr. McDougal has been very generous in allowing a large area of his property along the river to be available for school activities. This privilege will be denied if the guilty parties are not found."
There was a general groan from the students as they looked at each other in dismay. Jared glanced at Carlos. He could tell by the stiff way Carlos was sitting that he was scared. Jared felt sorry for him and wondered what he could do to help Carlos. He prayed in his heart, "Dear Jesus, please show me how I can help Carlos."
It was not until afternoon that Jared thought of a plan. He was not sure it would work but he was going to give it a try. As soon as school was out, he hurried out of the building as fast as he could.
"Jared!" Carlos was calling to him, but Jared did not stop. He was on an errand he had to do by himself.
It was getting dark when Jared finally reached home. He saw Beth at the window, but gave her a sign that meant he would not be able to stop. Jared was so tired, all he could do was sit up and eat his supper. His mother asked him where he had been. When he told her, she looked at him with concern and said, "Jared, go to bed as soon as you finish supper. And next time, please don't go way out there without telling me about it first."
"I'm sorry, Mom," Jared said. "I didn't know it would take me so long."
When he had finished, Jared went outside to put his bike away. He was startled to see someone standing by the garage. "It's me," Carlos said in a low voice. "I came to tell you not to tell anyone who was in that fishing group on Saturday. Everyone has promised not to tell, except you. I tried to catch you after school but you wouldn't wait. I have been afraid you would tell someone before I could talk to you. You haven't told anyone, have you, Jared?" Carlos' voice was filled with worry.
Jared was thinking of how he would answer him when Carlos grabbed his arm. "Jared," he demanded, "what is wrong? Why don't you answer me? Did you tell anyone?"
Jared answered with a calm voice, "Yes, I told someone, Carlos, but it is not who you think. It is…"
Carlos interrupted furiously. "You went and told? So that is what a Christian does—tattle on his friends! I hate you, Jared. We will never be friends again. And I will never, never be a Christian now."
Before Jared could stop him, Carlos whirled and ran blindly down the street.
When Jared got up the next morning, he remembered how angry Carlos had been the night before. His words, "I will never, never be a Christian now," kept ringing in Jared's ears. He got dressed and then read his Bible. As he read John 16:23, he leaped with excitement. "Wow!" Jared exclaimed as he read the verse again out loud. "…Whatever you shall ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you."
Jared decided to say this verse again and again until he could remember it without looking. "'…Whatever you shall ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you.' I know what I will do," Jared said to himself. "I will call this my 'Whatever Verse' and I am going to use it right now."
What will Jared do with his "Whatever Verse"?
Will Jared and Carlos ever be friends again?
Jared's adventures continue in your next lesson!