If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you (John 15:19).
Christ warns us here about the world’s opposition to Christians. We must learn to despise the world’s envy and hatred and whatever else it tries to do to us. It’s inevitable that the people of the world will hate God and Christ. And because they hate Christ, they will also hate us. Because of this ongoing opposition, we must know how to overcome it. We overcome it by despising the world’s arrogance.
The more we let the world’s arrogance bother us, the more the devil and the world like it. If the devil could make us agonize and worry day and night about the world’s opposition to the gospel, he would have great fun with it and would have to cover his mouth to keep from laughing. The people of the world would only rant and rave longer and louder. They would think they were succeeding because they were making us wail and cry. But if we defiantly ignore them, they become angry, sad, and irritated that their enemies are mocking them to their face—even when their ranting is at its peak.
The devil is extremely arrogant, and so is his bride, the world. So nothing is worse to him than being despised and mocked. When he experiences this and can’t do anything about it, he retreats. Otherwise, he doesn’t stop until he makes us discouraged and exhausted. He urges and pushes so long and hard that one could die of sorrow. But when he sees that we’re determined to hold out against his hatred and that we continue to be cheerful and even mock him, he’ll be the first one to grow tired. He’s so haughty that he can’t tolerate it when we defy him.
Adapted from Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional by Martin Luther