â€œHe raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORDâ€™s, and he hath set the world upon them.â€ (1 Samuel 2:8)
The above text contains the first reference in the Bible to Godâ€™s world. The â€œpillarsâ€ upon which it is set are, literally, â€œfirm summitsâ€ (not â€œcolumnsâ€), speaking of its permanence, â€œestablished that it shall not be movedâ€ through the eternal ages when â€œthe LORD reignethâ€ (Psalm 96:10).
That is the real world, where all who have been â€œraised upâ€ by the Lord through faith in His Word will â€œinherit the throne of gloryâ€ and reign with Him forever. But that real world has, for a time, become â€œthis present evil worldâ€ (Galatians 1:4), often mistakenly represented by its worldly inhabitants as their â€œrealâ€ world. In reality, this present world is very ephemeral, for â€œthe world passeth awayâ€ (1 John 2:17).
This present unreal world has become the domain of Satan, â€œthe god of this worldâ€ (2 Corinthians 4:4), for â€œthe whole world lieth in wickedness [or â€˜the wicked oneâ€™]â€ (1 John 5:19). Consequently, it is essential for believers now living in the world to heed the Lordâ€™s warning: â€œI have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth youâ€ (John 15:19).
The â€œworldâ€ includes its inhabitants and the world system they have developed. This present world, because of sin, has become so unreal that it no longer even knows its Creator. â€œHe was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him notâ€ (John 1:10). Nevertheless, â€œGod sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be savedâ€ (John 3:17). We can defeat this present evil world and prepare for our eternal service in the real world to come. â€œThis is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faithâ€ (1 John 5:4). HMM