Pastor James J. Barker

Text: GALATIANS 1:1-4


  1. Regarding Galatians 1:4, a preacher said, "God is not interested in improving the world, or making men comfortable in it, but in delivering men from it. Our priorities should coincide with His" William MacDonald.
  2. First John 2:15-17 says, "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.  For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.  And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever."
  3. Notice I John 2:17 says, "And the world passeth away..."
  4. First Corinthians 7:31 says, "The fashion of this world passeth away."
  5. James 4:4 says, "Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."
  6. Romans 12:2 says, "And be not conformed to this world."
  7. The Bible says in Galatians 1:4 that this is an "evil world."  It does not matter what you or I think about it, for we have God’s testimony of it.
  8. God created a paradise, but man has ruined it.  I saw some pictures yesterday of Zucotti Park.  The place is filthy, with trash piled up everywhere.  I even saw a picture of a protestor defecating on a police car.
  9. Genesis 1:31 says, "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good."
  10. Yes, but that was before the fall of man.  That was before the serpent beguiled Eve.
  11. Not long after Adam and Eve sinned, Cain killed his brother Abel.  Then later on we read the world had become so wicked that God had to destroy it with a flood.  Then we read of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.
  12. And on and on it goes.  The history of mankind is a story of sin, heartache, misery, rebelliousness, murder, treachery, deceit, wars and rumors of war.
  13. Galatians 1:4 accurately describes it as "this present evil world."



  1. The Bible uses the word "world" in various ways.   For example, John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
  2. Jesus died for the sins of the world.  When John the Baptist saw Jesus coming unto him, he said, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world" (John 1:29).
  3. There is a world full of sinners that need to be saved.  That is why our Lord said, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mark 16:15, 16).
  4. The word "world" has various shades of meaning.  A.T. Pierson said, "The general idea suggested by 'the world' is: the earth as the habitation of man, with everything that pertains to its material beauty, order and symmetrical arrangement; but, in connection with this, the notion of that which is fleeting, passing away, perishing" (The Bible and Spiritual Life).
  5. The word "world" as it is used in our text, and in Romans 14:2, in James 4:4, and in I John 2:15, means, the Satanic system, which man has built up in an effort to make himself happy without the Lord Jesus Christ.
  6. Andrew Murray said, "The world is now an organized kingdom of evil," ruled by Satan, the god of this world.
  7. First John 5:19 says, "The whole world lieth in wickedness."  This means the devil controls the minds of lost sinners.  Whether they realize it or not, whether they acknowledge it or not -- he is their god.
  8. "In wickedness" in I John 5:19 literally means "in the wicked one." That is why the NKJV translates the verse, "The whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one."
  9. Andrew Murray said, "The development of evil, now in its slow growth, then again in its sudden outbreaks, is no blind evolution, but the result of a deliberate systematic war of an intelligent power of evil against the rule of God. Whether in the grossest forms of heathenism, or amid the refinement of art and culture, or even under the guise of a nominal Christianity—everywhere the world lieth in darkness, and is in its principles and aims the very opposite of the kingdom of God and of heaven. The pursuit of the visible, the assertion of man's will against that of God, the pride of man's wisdom, are its distinguishing characteristics, in contrast with the will, and the love, and the service of the invisible God."
  10. The world draws us away from the love of God.   Remember what Paul said in II Timothy 4:10, "For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world."
  11. People refer to "the world of sports" and "the world of finance," and "the world of entertainment," and "the world of politics," etc.
  12. Any sphere where the Lord is not welcomed is antagonistic to God and the Bible, and should be off limits for a Christian who loves the Lord.
  13. Popular culture is certainly antagonistic to God and the Bible.  Therefore it is worldly.
  14. Someone has defined the world as "human society insofar as it is organized on wrong principles, and characterized by base desires,  false values, egotism, greed, fleshly pleasures, deceit, and vulgarity."



  1. Here is a more concise definition of the "world": "The world is the organized system headed up by Satan which is in opposition to God."
  2. That is why Satan is referred to three times in the Gospel of John as "the prince of this world" (John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11).
  3. That is why the apostle Paul refers to Satan as "the god of this world."  Second Corinthians 4:4 says, "In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."
  4. Satan blinds people's minds.  Satan deceives people into thinking that material things and temporal things are more important than spiritual things.
  5. When men become engrossed in material things, they become more and more worldly, and they get further and further from God.
  6. When men become engrossed in material things, they become more and more materialistic, and they get further and further from God.
  7. Money in itself is not evil, but the love of money is the root of all evil.
  8. The Bible says that Satan is the "god of this world," but he does not have ultimate authority because this is God's universe.  God created it.
  9. And in God's universe, the spiritual realm, the invisible realm, is higher and more important than the lower realm.
  10. Man was created in the image and likeness of God.   Man was created so that he might know God, and commune with God.
  11. Therefore, when men become enamored with the world, they neglect the things of God (cf. Romans 1:18-32).
  12. The world appeals to man's selfishness and pride.
  13. The world, with all of its glitter and gold, attracts men, and deceives men, entraps men, and ultimately destroys them.
  14. First John 2:16 says, "For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world."
  15. The devil uses the things of this world -- the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life -- to lead people away from God.
  16. "Lusts" refers to carnal cravings.  Consider the lewd advertising we are constantly bombarded with -- in our mail, in newspapers and magazines, on the television and on the Internet, on billboards and even on city buses.
  17. Titus 2:12 says we are to deny "ungodliness and worldly lusts."
  18. "The pride of life" refers to worldly ambition, selfishness, seeking prominence, the display of worldly honour and recognition, and worldly titles. Philippians 2:3 refers to "vainglory,"
  19. A.T. Pierson said, "They all appeal to self -- that root of all sin and pride and rebellion.  With pleasures, gains, crowns, which are but for a season, it ensnares and enslaves the man."
  20. Satan uses the things of this world to grab our attention, and change our focus from the things of God to worldly things.  Psalm 10:4 says, "The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts."
  21. The devil works on people's minds.  He brainwashes people.  For example, today multitudes today have been brainwashed into accepting homosexuality, evolution, global warming theories, and many other foolish ideas.
  22. Second Corinthians 4:4 says, "In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."
  23. Satan uses the things of this world to absorb our attention and our affections.  There are many examples of this in Scripture. Lot saw the well watered plain of Jordan as an ideal for his flocks and herds.
  24. One preacher said, "Sodom was a great place to raise cattle, but a terrible place to raise children."
  25. Lot wound up losing his home in Sodom.  He also wound up losing his family.
  26. Achan admitted to Joshua, "When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted them, and took them" (Joshua 7:21).
  27. The devil deceived Achan.  He lusted after that goodly Babylonish garment, and those two hundred shekels of silver, and a that wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight.
  28. And because of his covetousness and lust, he died along with his wife and children (Joshua 7:19-26).
  29. Even the great King David, a man after God's own heart, lusted after beautiful Bath-sheba.  His lust led to adultery and then the murder of her husband, Uriah the Hittite.
  30. So we read these sad words in I Kings 15:5, "Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite."
  31. A big ugly stain on King David's record.
  32. The things of this world can never satisfy.  Haggai 1:6 says, "Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes."
  33. The devil deceives people into thinking that happiness comes from money and the things money can buy.  Our Lord said that was "foolish" (cf. Luke 12:15-34; Matthew 7:24-29).
  34. The politicians are helping to destroy this country by promoting gambling.   Gambling breeds covetousness, poverty, drunkenness, organized crime, and a thousand other sins.
  35. It is just another worldly trick to get money from people and make them paupers.



  1. The Lord Jesus Christ gave himself for our sins, as a great sacrifice to make atonement for us (Gal. 4:1).
  2. He died so that we can have our sins forgiven.
  3. He died so that we can go to heaven instead of hell.
  4. And He died to "deliver us from this present evil world" (1:4).
  5. Not only to redeem us from the wrath of God, and the curse of the law, but also to recover us from the corruption that is in the world through lust (II Peter 1:4).
  6. The Lord Jesus Christ died to deliver us from this present evil world, not just to take us out of it, which He will do at the rapture, but to rescue us from the power of it.
  7. This is "according to the will of God and our Father" (1:4).  Christians sometimes wonder about the will of God.  Well, it is definitely God's will for you to be delivered from this present evil world (1:4).
  8. Romans 12:2 says, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
  9. We need to understand that the spirit of this present evil world and the will of God are diametrically opposed.  There can be no middle ground.
  10. For us to properly understand the will of God, and to fully enjoy the blessings of being in the will of God, we must come out and be entirely separate from all that is of this present evil world.
  11. The Lord Jesus Christ came to deliver us out of this present evil world, by freeing us from its spirit, and making us partakers of the divine nature (II Peter 1:4).
  12. Our Lord said to His antagonists, "Ye are of this world; I am not of this world" (John 8:23).
  13. In John 18:36, our Lord said to worldly Pontius Pilate, "My kingdom is not of this world."
  14. But all Pilate understood was this world.  Beloved, you and I are not to be like worldly Pontius Pilate. Our Lord said in John 15:19, "If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you."
  15. Beloved, we can endure the enmity of the world because the Lord Jesus Christ died to deliver us from this present evil world.
  16. This is according to the will of God (Gal. 1:4).



  1. This morning I have attempted to demonstrate how the devil uses the world to deceive people and to lead them astray.
  2. There is one method I have not spent time with, and that is the world of religion.  Multitudes of lost sinners are convinced that they are on their way to heaven because they are religious, or they do good deeds, or are church members, etc.
  3. In John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, Christian meets a fellow named Mr. Worldly Wiseman from the town of Carnal Policy.
  4. Mr. Worldly Wiseman directed Christian to a village named Morality, and to a gentleman there whose name was Mr. Legality.
  5. Soon Christian discovered that Mr. Worldly Wiseman gave him bad counsel.  He once again meets up with Evangelist, who corrected him and sent him toward the wicket gate, and on to the straight and narrow King's Highway.

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