This devotional first appeared in https://www.revivalandreformation.org
I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. John 17:14, 15.
The Christian has duties to do in the world, and God holds him responsible for their faithful performance. He is not to confine himself in monastic walls, nor to avoid all association with worldlings. It is true that his principles will be put to the severest test, and he will be pained by what his eyes see and his ears hear. But he must not, by becoming familiar with these sights and sounds, learn to love them. By association with the world, we incline to catch the spirit of the world, and to adopt their customs, tastes, and preferences. But we are commanded, “Come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters” (2 Corinthians 6:17, 18).
Never let the world say that worldlings and Christ’s followers are alike in their tastes and pursuits; for God has drawn a line between His people and the world. This line of demarcation is broad and deep and clear; it is not so blended with the world that it is not discernible. “The Lord knoweth them that are his” (2 Timothy 2:19). “By their fruits ye shall know them” (Matthew 7:20).
It is only by watching unto prayer, and the exercise of living faith, that the Christian can preserve his integrity in the midst of the temptations that Satan brings to bear upon him. But “whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith” (1 John 5:4). Talk to your heart constantly the language of faith:“Jesus said He would receive me, and I believe His word. I will praise Him; I will glorify His name.” Satan will be close by your side to suggest that you do not feel any joy. Answer him, “‘This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.’ I have everything to be glad of; for I am a child of God. I am trusting in Jesus. The law of God is in my heart; none of my steps shall slide.”—The Signs of the Times, May 15, 1884.