Spirit-Ruled Affections

Spirit-Ruled Affections
1 Jn. 2: 14-17

30 March 2007
Domenic Marbaniang

Horace W: ‘The world is a comedy for those who think but a tragedy for those who feel.’
Men are powerfully ruled by their affections.
Antiphanes: ‘Only two things a man cannot hide: that he is drunk and that he’s in love.’

1. AFFECTIONS DEFINE IDENTITY: What we love is what we become like. Our affections mirror our inner self. Who are we?

a. In Pedigree: We are Children of God (1Jn. 4:7; 3:1). You have divine nature.
b. As Possession: We are Sheep of God (Jn. 10: 27-29). You have divine allegiance.
c. In Position: We are Disciples of Xt (Jn. 13:35). You have a divine commission.
How do you look at the world & how does the world look at you?
‘The depth of Christian experience can be measured by the intensity of horror one senses on hearing the word ‘world’.’
Christ described a Christian’s relationship with the world in two ways:
a. He is unattached to the things of the world – Lk. 9: 23-27
b. He is hated by the world – Jn. 15:18,19. i.e., despised and rejected.
‘The world loves its own.’ Affections reflect our identity.
It is not what we were but what we are at present that’s imp. Jewish Prov. ‘man not judged by past but by present.’
To the Ephesian Church: You’ve left ur 1st love: laid aside, yielded up. Given it up for some other love.
Jer. 2:13: forsook me and hewn other cisterns. Those who did so lost their position in the covenant relationship and were designated enemies of God.

2. AFFECTIONS AFFECT DESTINY: What u love is what u’r led by. Three things:
a. Spectacles of Wind: Lust of Eyes
b. Sensations of Sin: Lust of Flesh
c. Subversion of Will: Pride of Life

#1 SPECTACLES OF WIND: Eccl. 2:10, 11; 2:17 – chasing after the wind – Pr. 23:5: Riches take wings: Don’t last.
This extends even to one’s theological constructions or reconstructions.

I don’t criticize the concept of a material heaven; I’m against have a materialistic reason for going to heaven.
Golden streets, Super-star mansions & bungalows, parks of delight and rapturous music. Someone even said, I don’t like going to such a heaven; I’d rather be amidst flowers, streams, mountains, and waterfalls, than in a golden cage of gold. The lust of eyes governs our feelings of where we wish to be. The Kingdom of heaven is beyond this-worldly analogy. The lustrous world is only passing by. We wait for the invisible country which will never fade away.

In any sight desired, at least two things are sought: beauty and intricacy or marvel. These both are desired for they stimulate affections. And this isn’t bad; for instance in the song: How great Thou art: I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder, Thy power thruout the universe displayed. Then sings my soul my Savior God to thee, How great thou art.

However, it becomes evil when sought for the sake of stimulus alone. In such a case, the eyes suffer the terrible disorder of dissatisfaction. The ancient and modern madness after newer idols, refined imageries, and maga edifices reflect such a predicament of human dissatisfaction. Men desires to produce whatever he is capable of imagining.

It is no wonder that the words ‘images’ and ‘imagination’ are connected and Gen. 6 says ‘the imaginations of the thoughts of man’s heart was evil continually.’ Napoleon Bonaparte said that ‘Men of imagination rule the world.’ The modern situation goes a step beyond that, the world is not ruled by men of imagination, it is men who are ruled by a world of imagination. We have built a kingdom of virtual reality.

The modern era can be rightly termed the AGE OF IMAGES. From pencil wrappers to computer games, from movie theatres to T.V. screens, from billboard ads to a youth’s bedroom wallposters, from metropolitan stadia to the village pan shop, it’s the rule of images. We live in the empire of images.
Under the camouflage of the freedom of expression, behind the shield unrestraint liberty prowls the menacing figure of lust. All that the world has built is only a castle in the wind. Solomon: I did all and found out it’s chasing the wind.

IT’s therefore important to control what we see and how we see. The wise man has eyes on head (Eccl. 2:14).
Publius Syrus: The eyes do not go wrong if the mind rules the eyes. The mind must be suffused with God’s Word.

#2 SENSATIONS OF SIN: Rom. 7:5 – passions of flesh; Jas. 1:15 – lust produces sin.
Freud: Man is ruled by the drive of pleasure
Sartre: Man is a bundle of passions

The truth: Man ruled by passion is worse than the beast; for beasts are governed by instinct and man is to be governed by the truth that he learns. To give in to passion is to go beyond instinct. This is what Paul calls being ‘unnatural’ or being ‘against nature’ or ‘leaving the natural use’ Rom. 1:26,27.
Lawrence J. Crabb Jr.

2 Basic Needs
Significance – Power-drive (megalomania) – violence
Security – Pleasure-drive (erotomania) – immorality

DC Talk:
It took so long for me to see, that I’m a victim of the nature in me;
Left to myself I realize, I am the maker of my own demise.

The ocean of life looks calm on the surface; but there are strong undercurrents of destruction beneath.

A recognition of the monstrous passion within is important. Malcolm Muggeridge tells the story o fhow once on the banks of an Indian river he saw a woman bathing at a distance. His passions enflamed, he began swimming in that direction, all the while imagining the sensationalism of sinful extrusion he was soon to experience, until he got within her proximity only to be shocked and bewildered by what he saw; he was looking at the body of a leper. Muggeridge said: it took some time for him to realize that it wasn’t her body that was leprous as much as was his own heart.

The OT permitted not a bit of leaven in worship. Do we still cherish some secret, hidden sin?
The world is a factory of carnal wish-fulfillment. The modern age of computers makes it possible to experience in virtual reality what is legally forbidden. There is a menu of immoralities from which humans can now choose.

From Ice-cream cones to Ice-capped mountain trekking, from gizmo-drives to outer-space travel, from video games to the wrestling ring, from bed room TV to theatres, from the dark cell of the heart to the raging rantings of the journalist, if the Nithari killings and the Mumbai blasts are shocking now, they may not be a decade later for the soft skin of human conscience turns into a rough hide with every shock it experiences. James ask: From where do they all come: it is the ravings and rantings of inner passions within that is destroying humanity.

Where do you stand as a burning light of God? Are you ruled by the lusts of the world or by Christ-like love; by the immoral desires of sin or by Christ’s zeal for righteousness. What u love is what will lead you on.

#3 SUBVERSION OF WILL – PRIDE OF LIFE.
Bible states categorically: pride goes before destruction
Jas 4:6 – God resists the proud
Rom. 1: Unthankful, ungrateful, not glorifying God, willful suppression of Truth

Involves
1. Evil Resolution of Will : I will
2. Total Dissolution of Spirit : Death of Conscience

GEHAZI – 2 Kgs. 5:20
Fear of God is the beginning of Wisdom

ISLAM – Submission to God: Religious quest to come back to God: failure

XT in Gathsamane

If Christ is not your Lord He can’t be your Savior’

CONCLUSION
Let the invisible kingdom of God be before your eyes.
Let the divine passion for righteousness and truth consume your being.
Let your will be yielded up to the Lordship of XT.
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