(1 John 2:14-17)

by Kevin Rutherford


If we love the material possessions of the world more than we love God we are weak.  If we love the wickedness of the world more than we love the purity of holiness then we are not strong.  John taught us not to love the world because the world is passing away (1 John 2:15-17).

Christians who love the world have not overcome the wicked one (I John 2:14).  Satan will be the master of our lives if we cannot focus on spiritual matters.  That being the case it is important that we learn to focus on the spiritual rather than the worldly.  This is done in large part by reading, studying, knowing, and applying the word of God.  John wrote, “I have written to you, young men because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you.” (1 John 2:14)  These men were strong because they had the Word of God inside of them.

The Word of God makes us strong because it acts a mirror into our souls (James 1:25).  We can see our spiritual weaknesses by studying the Bible (Hebrews 4:12).  We can look to the example of Christ and see where we are failing.  We can read the writing of inspired men and understand how Christians are to behave.  Then we can compare that to our own lives and see where we need to make improvements.  If we will do this, then we will be strong and we will overcome the wicked one.  If we are strong, we will not love the world that is passing away.

When Paul spoke to the elders he told them the Word of God was able to build them up and give them an inheritance among all those who are sanctified (Acts 20:32).  What builds us up?  The Word of God does.  This is why we are told it is the Word of God that produces faith in the hearts of men and women (Romans 10:17).  It produces faith and it strengthens faith.  If you want to be built up and become spiritually strong then you must study and apply the Word of God.  When you are strong you will overcome the wicked one and you will not love the world.

Jesus is an excellent example of the power of the Word of God.  The Word of God made Him strong when facing the temptations of Satan (Matthew 4:1-11).  The devil tempted the Lord with that which is of the world.  Those temptations failed because Jesus did not love the world.  Those temptations failed because Jesus knew and made correct application of the Scripture.  With each worldly temptation thrown at Him by the devil, Jesus answered with The Word of God.  In fact, Jesus said at that time, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4).”

If you want to be strong, then you will make sure the Word of God is in you.  If you want to overcome the wicked one, the Word of God will have to abide in you.  If you are to avoid loving the things of the world, then the Word of God must be in you.  The TV advertisement asks with reference to a sports drink, “Is it in you?”  I ask, with reference to the Word of God, “Is it in you?” - KVR