Worldliness can easily be shrugged off as a minor inconsistency to what is a normal Christian life. It is not as wicked as taking another man’s wife or even taking another man’s life. It is not as evil as blaspheming God’s name or reasoning out that He does not exist. Rather, the twisted logic goes, it is something that every believer has to live with as he goes about business in this fallen world with all of its material attractions and entertainments. Anyway, this problem will disappear as soon as the new world comes.
But is worldliness a benign threat that should cause no alarm or does it pose a clear and present danger to our souls? Should it be tolerated as a relatively harmless weakness or should it be viewed as a malignancy that eats up our spiritual lives and leaves our souls a barren waste?
We let our invited speaker, Pas. Mon Macapagal, pastor of the Cubao Reformed Baptist Church answer these questions in our recently held annual church retreat. Pas. Mon preached two messages on the theme “You and Me Against the World-The Church and The Individual Christian Against the World.”
We were reminded that worldliness is not just a way of life but primarily a state of heart. The change must therefore come from within. There must be a renewing of the mind, an ordering of attitudes to value those things which truly matter and not those things which are fleeting and temporal.
It was also pointed out that the temptation is so strong that a clear imperative had to be given by the apostle John in his first epistle for the children of God not to love the world. Included in that command is the duty to mortify lustful desires and boastful pride and the motivation to that duty by saying that the love of the Father is not with those who love this world.
We were then given a few practical directives by our speaker as to how to overcome worldliness beginning with examining the inclination of our hearts, then to setting the right priorities in life, being committed to resist the creeping influence of worldliness, availing of the means of grace to strengthen us, and making a stand for God and choosing to serve Him rather than the idol of money and material things. Last but not the least was the reminder that one of the sins that Christ died for on the cross was worldliness-a great motive for us to repent of this sin which so easily entangles us.
We missed a few people at the retreat but the fellowship of those who were there was warm and sweet. We thank God for using Pastor Mon in our midst and pray that the Lord would bless His ministry in our sister church in Cubao with abundant fruit.
May God use the messages that were preached to make MCBC a more heavenly minded church without ever losing its earthly usefulness.