The reason Jesus saved us was to deliver us from the oppression of this world. When we look at the pain, suffering, wars, terrorism, poverty, human trafficking, crime, suicide, violence, injustice, we see a world lost in darkness.
The Bible says that the whole world lies under the authority and dominion of the devil, who is the spirit of this world. Under him are the rulers of the darkness of this world. The Apostle Paul wrote:
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12 KJV)
“And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience.” (Ephesians 2:1-2 NKJV, emphasis mine.)
This is why we were saved, so that we would be set apart from this world system, no longer dead in our sins.
The Apostle Paul wrote:
“Grace to you and peace from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, who 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 1:3-4 KJV, emphasis mine.)
Jesus not only delivered us from our sins, but also delivered us from the world. The reason He needed to also deliver us from the world is because it lies under the control of the devil. The Apostle John wrote:
“We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.” (1 John 5:19 NKJV)
As believers in Christ, we are of God. We are no longer of this world. Jesus prayed to the Father:
“I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.” (John 17:15-16 NKJV)
Christ is not of this world. Therefore, if we are in Christ, then we are no longer of this world. We are now of God. Satan was our earthly father, but now God is our heavenly Father. This is why Jesus said to the multitudes who did not believe in Him:
“You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and he does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” (John 8:44 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
The devil is the god of this world. The reason that people resist following Christ is because they are under the control of the enemy. He is their spiritual father, and that is why they do what he wants them to do. Before we came to Christ, we were also of this world. Christ has called us out of the world, so that we might live for God, and do the things that are pleasing to Him.
Jesus said to His followers:
“If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” (John 17:19 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
Jesus delivered us from the world, so that we might keep ourselves separate from the ways of the world. God wants us to be His children, holy and distinct from the rest of the world. This is why the Apostle Paul wrote:
“Therefore ‘Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord almighty.’ ” (2 Corinthians 6:17-18 NKJV, words in emphasis mine.)
The whole world lies in darkness, but the glory of our heavenly Father shines through us. The Apostle Paul wrote:
“For you were once darkness, now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light.” (Ephesians 5:8 NKJV)
Once we have been set apart from the world, the devil will always try to entice us back. He wants us to set our minds on the things which appeal to our flesh. We must be careful not to be conformed again to the ways of the world. The Apostle Paul warned the saints in Rome about this:
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2 NKJV, emphasis mine.)
God has called us out of darkness, so that we might shine as beacons of light to a lost and dying world.
You are holy, dear saint!
[All Scripture quotations have been taken from The Holy Bible, New King James Version, copyright 1982, Thomas Nelson Inc, unless otherwise noted.]
As a believer, how do you see yourself compared to the rest of the world? Do you feel that you have been called out from the world? Let me know in the comments below!