TWO SHORT LETTERS
Today’s Reading: 2 – 3 John
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Key Verses: 2 John 1:5, 3 John 1:5-6
And now I plead with you, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment to you, but that which we have had from the beginning: that we love one another…
Beloved, you do faithfully whatever you do for the brethren and for strangers, who have borne witness of your love before the church. If you send them forward on their journey in a manner worthy of God, you will do well.
John’s primary message in his Gospel and in his three letters is about God’s love and “that we love one another.” Second John teaches how to behave as Christians, and how to recognize any teaching which diminishes the Person of Jesus Christ by teaching that He was an angelic spirit who was not 100% human as well as 100% God! Let’s not forget that while John was a most loving person, he was also referred to by Jesus as one of the “sons of thunder” (“Boanerges” in Greek – Mark 3:17). Because he loved God and people, John was able to thunder out his message of uncompromising truth, particularly the truth about the One with whom he spent over three years.
In his third letter, John refers to a previous letter which he had written, perhaps First or Second John, which had been rejected by “Diotrephes,” a leader in one of the churches. Religious cult founders are much like this man who “loved the preeminence,” who “spoke malicious words,” and who exalts himself into a place of egotistical religious authority. Gaius and Demetrius are two generous and humble men. We would do well to follow their examples.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord Jesus, I did not have the glorious opportunity that John had. He spent all that time with You during Your ministry in the Galilee and Jerusalem, and he was there at the cross when You died. He even fished with You, Lord, along with his brother James, Peter and Andrew, when You caused great catches of fish, and he was there when You miraculously fed the 4,000 and the 5,000. Realizing that John knew You better than I ever could, I pray for the grace to accept and believe John’s words about You. In Your Name I ask this. Amen!!!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I find it hard to imagine how inflated are the opinions some have of themselves, that they think they know better than the Prophets and Apostles, who gave us the historical record of God interacting with His human family. The wanderings of the imaginations of some who teach false doctrines, like Diotrephes, are with us in books, lectures in universities, media appearances, etc. Now, 2,000 years later, there are still some who are getting attention who think they know the facts better than those who were actually there when the events they describe happened. In order to deceive people, the devil even comes as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11:12-15). There are false doctrines brought to our doors. The founder of one of these says he got his information from an angel (Mormonism), and another founder was an independent minister in Brooklyn, NY, who was bitter against other Pastors in his area. He claimed to know the Greek language in which the New Testament was written, but in the records of a court of law in which he appeared, he could not name the letters of the Greek alphabet. He resurrected the false doctrines which John thundered against. Then it was called “Arianism;” today it’s “The Watchtower Society” or “Jehovah’s Witnesses.”
Yours for “Truth,” John’s message, and for living out that truth as did “the elect lady and her children.” Also for learning from the godliness and generosity of Gaius, and for following the example of the one who “has a good testimony from all, and from the truth itself,” Demetrius!!
P.S. If readers have the time, I suggest going back into the blogs and reviewing all three of John’s letters. Tomorrow, God willing, we’ll be in the book of Obadiah.