Imagine for a moment that you are stranded on a desert island with a handful of people, fighting for survival. Food and water supplies are running out quickly and desperation is beginning to set in. One member of the group discovers an old, dilapidated water well that could be repaired and used, with some digging and hard work. The entire group dedicates itself to digging for water, including yourself. The days are long and you’ve never been more thirsty in your life. There are signs of progress, but things are not moving as fast as you’d like. Suddenly, one hot afternoon you notice across the way the most beautiful sight imaginable. You can’t believe you’ve missed it, but before your very eyes you see a powerful waterfall pooling into a deep oasis of clear, cool water. Immediately your mind goes to the warnings your friends have given you about hallucinations and mirages that may appear due to your condition. These warnings however fade into the back of your mind as you rush to the water and dive in! You plunge your head beneath the cool waves only to gulp a mouth full of gritty sand and sea shells. Clearly the oasis was not really there, and surging expectation has quickly turned into frustration and disappointment.
Have you ever experienced the gritty disappointment that sin brings? This week at Redeemer, we will consider a passage that informs us of the dangers of running after the “mirage of pleasures” offered by the world. The title of our sermon this week is Do Not Love The World, from 1 John 2:15-17. Its interesting to see that John’s depiction of the temptation brought on by the world (the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life) describes accurately the sin of our original parents. When Eve saw that the fruit was “good for food” and a “delight to the eyes,” she ate. The promise that she was holding onto was that she would “be like God.” I wonder if these core temptations have changed much since the Garden? Have you considered the words of Jesus lately that describe his followers as “the light of the world” (Matt. 5:14)? How can we be the light of the world if we are in love with the world’s eluding pleasures? Jesus continues in verse 16 to say “let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” So friend, what pleasures are you running to? Are you continually running after the oasis of deception brought on by pride and lust? Solomon wrote that “the heart of a man is never satisfied” (Prov. 27:20). Do you know that there is a fountain that will never run dry in Jesus? Join us this week as we seek to dive into that living water!
Psalm 16:11– You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore
Come to the Waters!