The world

(Henry Law, "Gleanings from the Book of Life")

The world
forges chains to bind its captives.

The world is confessedly the enemy of God-
"The friendship of the world is enmity with God."

The exhortation is clear, "Do not love the world
or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world,
the love of the Father is not in him." 1 John 2:15

The power of this tyrant is mainly in its
fascinating arts.

The world coaxes, it entices, it allures.

The world presents attractive baits.

The world shows its votaries decked in
enchanting guise.

The world presents goblets filled to the
brim with intoxicating draughts.

The world points to the merry laugh and
noisy revelries of its infatuated crowds.

The world uses ridicule and scorn to deter
those who venture to prefer another path.

Frightful are its triumphs!

How many have fallen slain at its feet!

How many throng the cells of hell, enticed
and ruined by its fascinations!

From this enemy Jesus makes the believer free.
He sends His Holy Spirit, and then the enslaving
chain is broken

He tears the deceiving mask from the world's
features, and shows its native hideousness.

He exposes . . .
  its hollow insipidity,
  its utter emptiness,
  its thorough insufficiency to give real peace.

The believer sees that all its ways lead
to disappointment and to shame.

He mourns the folly of ever yielding to its poor fallacies.