They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. (1 John 4:5)
Several years ago, we took a family vacation to San Antonio, Texas. A visit to San Antonio is not complete without going to the Alamo. While walking through the compound, we were surprised to hear several different languages being spoken. Apparently, people from all over come to see what symbolizes the fighting spirit of resilience.
I heard a family speaking French. I looked at my son, who was taking French at the time, and asked him what language this particular family was speaking. He leaned in to them, looked at me and said, “I don’t know.” I thought he was joking, but he wasn’t—leaving me to wonder, “If you take a language in school and don’t recognize it being spoken on the streets, who has failed?” I don’t even want to know the answer to that question.
What John told us in verse five is that the world is speaking loud and clear, but we shouldn’t be surprised if we don’t go along with its viewpoints. It goes even deeper than that, really. John called all believers, everywhere, to rejoice because they should clearly see the difference between God and the world. So, if you find that the world does not orient to your viewpoint, be encouraged, because you are walking with God and speaking his language.
Don’t be surprised if the world misunderstands you.
Devon Smith is district superintendent of the Tri-State District of The Wesleyan Church, and founder/director of the CROSS Training ordination program at Oklahoma Wesleyan University.
© 2020 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.