(More on the booklet background and our fundamental assumptions…)
I’m hoping you can see the connection between otherworldliness and the principle of disentanglement (my third pillar of Christian Mysticism). All Creation is just a tool for His glory — everything in your human existence in this world is tentative, a disposable tool. That includes every human relationship, even your blood kinships. Jesus said in so many words that if your family ties conflict with His calling in your life, then you’ll have to sacrifice those family ties (Matthew 10:34-40). It’s sad when something God granted as a blessing is so perverted you can’t use it for Him, but that’s the Curse of the Fall.
The accusation of “worldliness” means being too attached to this world. Like Lot’s wife, if you can’t sacrifice everything you know, you are the sacrifice. If you don’t begin to live from your heart by moving your sense of identity into the higher realm of moral discernment, then your own mind becomes the biggest chain of all. You cannot possibly manage your share of Creation’s assets as God intended because you end up blocking out the voice of God. It’s monumental arrogance to demand that God speak to your conscious intellect when He’s made it clear that only your heart is capable of hearing His voice.
This world is not my home;
I’m just a-passin’ through.
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue.
The angels beckoned me from Heaven’s open door,
and I can’t feel at home in this world any more.
(words and music by Jim Reeves)
It’s not that we always have to accept the worst of this world’s accommodations, but that we invest no lasting interest in them. Does God provide a really fancy facility with lots of money and people? Don’t be trapped by that provision when He next asks you to do something that means abandoning all of that. Don’t allow the people involved to assume — even unconsciously — that the trappings of organization mean anything. That’s not “God’s House;” you are God’s House. If you can’t freely give something, then God can’t replace it with something better. Be aware of the moral context.
The particulars of how the first New Testament churches did things are not sacred. The narrative is loaded with contextual adaptations that may not fit our world today. Don’t make an idol of the things God has created for His glory; serve the Creator and see His glory without the stuff. This is the only way we can hope to bring His glory to life in our own context as we enter a time of great tribulation.
His glory is all the matters in this life.
Addenda: As a matter of vocabulary, please distinguish between “this world” and “Creation.” The former is a biblical figure of speech referring to the prevailing human culture, typical in defiance or ignorance of revelation. Creation is a term for everything that isn’t God’s divine Person. There is a connotation that Creation refers mostly to the unfallen part of our world, whereas “this world” is most distinctly fallen. If you are aware of these as specific terms, the context will usually indicate how these and related terms are used.