For the believers, God calls us His friends. But when we are friends with the world, James boldly says in James 4:4 that we are adulterous people. We are “spiritually cheating” on God when we sit on the fence and choose to be both friends with God and friends with the world. We say we follow God, but live for the passions and desires of the world.
By now it should be no surprise that we are in a war. It is a daily war that needs constant attention and acknowledgement. We are at war with the flesh, the world and the devil. We learn throughout the book of James that “humility” is a clear theme. There is “heavenly” wisdom that is from above and “earthly” wisdom that is unspiritual and demonic. The world says that we need to be friends with wealth, money and material things. We cannot serve two masters.
When the desires and passions of the world come rushing in, we can become self-focused with desires and passions that burn within. passions are not of God (“heavenly”) they are of the world (“earthly” ). When our affection for God is divided, and we are spiritually cheating on God, who are we fooling?
MASKS WE WEAR
I remember when my eldest daughter Sophia was about two years old, we would often take trips to the zoo. On one of those outings Sophia wanted this lion mask for her birthday. At home I would put on this mask with the intent to give her a scare. Like any good Dad would do. Sophia would enter the room as a little two year old and be terrified. I would take off the mask, and she would run into my arms, relieved that it was me and she could be protected. Sophia is now six.
So now when I put on the mask and sneak up behind her while she is coloring, she will turn around and say “Dad, what are you doing? Can you please take off the mask; you’re stretching it out!” When we sit on the fence, we are masking who we are and not fooling anyone. We may proclaim to be Christians, but the watching world sees no difference.
We are not fooling anyone. We are only fooling ourselves.