From Worldliness: Resisting the Seduction of a Fallen World, edited by CJ Mahaney…
Today, the greatest challenge facing American evangelicals is not persecution from the world, but seduction by the world….
What are your goals? Do they drive you forward–to financial security, more friends, successful kids, a certain position at work, learning a craft or trade? Or do they drive you upward–to obeying and glorifying God above all else? What gets you out of bed in the morning?
What dominates your mind and stirs your heart? Is it discontentment with your life? Longings for earthly pleasures? Does outward prosperity appeal to you more than growth in godliness? Or is your prayer life characterized by heartfelt supplications for God’s will to be done and his kingdom to come?
Do you relate to God as if he exists to further your selfish ambitions or are you convinced that you exist to glorify him? Are you trying to live without God?
Do you covet the esteem and crave the approval of those around you? Do you go to great lengths to avoid looking foolish or being rejected for your Christian faith? Do you consider present and material results more important than eternal reward? Have you departed from God and adopted idols instead? Are you at war with God?
What are you captivated by? Really, what do you think about most often, what images have the power to raise your interest? It’s probably whatever is coming to mind right now. And we must ask ourselves, what value does it have?
How do you define yourself? How does your profile read? How do you want to be known?
And, for the good news:
The antidote to worldliness is the cross of Jesus Christ…Do you want the world to lose its appeal? Then crowd out worldliness by filling your affections with the cross of Christ. Crucify the world as a dead and undesirable thing by meditating on the love of the Savior. Resist the bait of the world by gazing at the wondrous cross…We must fight worldliness because it dulls our affections for Christ and distracts our attention from Christ. Wordliness is so serious because Christ is so glorious.