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The World's Motives (1 John 3:11-13)

Introductory Thoughts

The Bible clearly points out that the natural man is guided by self-serving motives. Adam and Eve partook of the forbidden fruit because of the perceived benefits they would receive (Genesis 3:6). It was likewise a self-serving motive that drove Cain to kill his brother Abel (Genesis 4:3-8; 1 John 3:11-13). Even when God meted out Cain’s judgment, Cain selfishly said, “My punishment is greater than I can bear” (Genesis 4:13). The world is driven by self-preservation and self-promotion placing it at the opposite end of the spectrum from God. Only God would give His beloved Son so that His enemies (Romans 5:10) could have eternal life.

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): Judas became angry when Mary anointed Jesus with costly ointment. His expressed motive for the anger was that he cared for the poor, but the Bible points to the reality of the situation as much different (John 12:1-6). Absalom had a deceitful motive for being friendly to the people of his father's kingdom (2 Samuel 15:1-6, 10).
  • (For everyone): What are some evil deeds found within the Bible? What are the motives behind those actions? What foundational premise exists in every one of these incidents?
  • Have you trusted Christ as Saviour? Do you ever find that your motives for serving Him actually match with the worlds motives for doing wrong?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask God to help you consider the nature of your motives.
  • Thank the Lord for the pure motives behind His works.