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John writes to the congregation encouraging them because they have been faithful and have not been led astray by alternative saviours and ways of salvaiton.
Hi everyone and welcome to Training for Life Redeemed. I’m Dan, and I’m with my father, David Jackson, just hanging out in his study with all these lovely books behind us. we are hitting the second letter of John today. Last week we looked at the third letter of John. last week was lovely. We had a church that had split and John was dealing with some issues there and telling him that he was going to come if he didn’t listen to the episode, Just skip back one. The second letter of John Dad is different. It is because it’s kind of more formal in how it’s laid out. It’s in grace to you, mercy and peace. You know, kind of like Paul’s a little bit still just calling himself the elder, not John, but we still think it’s John. Yep. Yeah. . and then he’s going to talk about, you know, obeying the commands of God with, of Jesus, which is basically just to love one another. Yep. and then he is going to go on to talk about deceivers out in the world. He’s going to call them Antichrist. He’s going to say, Do not welcome people who have wrong doctrine into your house. He’s going to be tougher than what he was in the third letter of John
So, set the scene here, Dad. This is still the same context. We’re still up in Eastern Turkey, you said, I think. Yes. Western Turkey, Western Turkey. Yep. so we’ve got Laodicea we’ve got Ephesus, we’ve got Colossae and a whole bunch of other churches Yep. Who are up in this little area. We saying that the three letters are going together Yeah. But the same messenger, but probably to different churches and to different people.
Well, yeah. So there’s a network of churches. Mm. This one’s going to go at least initially to wherever Gaius is. but then whatever’s hitting that one church is hitting all of ’em. Yeah. and it’s interesting actually, if you, if you go through, I mean, Jesus did a lot of, Jesus did a lot of things about, you know, false prophets and false teachers will come. He warned everybody that that was going to happen. so you start off in the early part of the New Testament and you’ve got the Galatian heresy. So if you’re not circumcised, you’re not saved. So we had that debate and that was about 48 AD. So you’re looking at, you know, within 20 years of Jesus’ death and resurrection, 15 years of Jesus death and resurrection, you’ve got this huge crisis in the Jewish Christian community over circumcision. So we settle all of that down.
We deal with the, you know, people running around the, the Jewish sort of anti mission. so that’s all solved. That’s, you know, 48, 50 AD. This is another 10 or so years later. And if you look at the, your New Testament, generally all of the general epistles, possibly except James, but I think James is probably in there, are dealing with false teachers. So Hebrews one and two, Peter, 1, 2, 3, John, Jude, this, this whole thing. And, and you can throw in there, one and two Timothy and Titus. Yep. or especially two Timothy and Titus. They, they’re the churches in this area have been hit with a major heresy, and it’s another gospel and it’s totally thrown the church into upheaval. and everybody speculates out about what it is. we’ll get more into what it is next week, but I’ll tell you up upfront, it’s not Gnosticism.
Mm-hmm. . Okay. The whole gnostic thing that you read about, and you hear about, that’s way over in the second century, 180 AD sometime this is a hundred and something years earlier. So this heresy is causing major upheaval. And yeah, you asked last week about why isn’t he naming names and doing stuff. He named Diotrephes and Demetrius doesn’t name himself, doesn’t identify where the church is. And maybe what’s going on here is he’s keeping his head down under the radar so that this doesn’t go out to Roman authorities. We find out in Revelation later on, which could be 20 years later, that he’s on an island in exile. Mm-hmm. . so the Romans aren’t all that friendly, so he doesn’t, he, he writes to, what does he call her? The chosen lady? well, the chosen lady is code for the church. Yep. So he is writing to a local church, the bride of Christ, that model. and so the first le the third letter is to the pastor. This one is to the congregation. Yep.
Okay, cool. So why is it important for him to hit in onto these things about, So obeying the command to love one another, which then goes on with Deceivers and not hanging out with people . Yeah. It’s
So let you love one another, but those people aren’t allowed to stay in your house. . Yeah. Okay. so, and, and I think that’s an important passage. Where is it? yeah. If anyone comes to you and doesn’t bring this teaching, don’t receive him into your house. Don’t give him a greeting that’s pretty severe. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Now, in the context, that’s loving, that’s a loving thing to do because if you think you are being loving by letting false teachers stay at your house and helping them to peddle their false teaching, you are actually sending people to hell that’s not loving. So we draw some loving boundaries, and those boundaries keep people safe. so, you know, there are plenty of people who come and knock on your door. Yep. And they want to peddle a false gospel. and, you know, don’t let ’em in.
Okay. So does that apply then, like your Jehovah’s Witnesses and all that kind of stuff? Yeah. So I shouldn’t have him in my house to argue with them about gospel .
I, we shouldn’t be offering them hospitality. Yeah. We shouldn’t be supporting their ministry in any way. we shouldn’t give them the appearance of credibility. we shouldn’t hang out as it were publicly with them in fellowship. Yeah. I have issues with, I mean, there are difficulties. when you speak at a conference, for example, and you share the platform with other people, do you share the platform as inclusive? We’re all one? Or do you share the platform, as you know, here are several different Yeah. Gospels, I think we struggle with that sometimes, and we bend the rules and we give the wrong impression. so that, that’s the kind of thing that we’re dealing with here. I remember, Charles Hodge, Charles Hodge was a great defender of the faith back in the 1850s, 1860s, in Philadelphia. Down south. there were people who were conservative, They defended the faith, but they believed in slavery. So they were on the pro-slavery ticket down in the south, up north. The people in Charles Hodge’s church were anti-slavery, but they didn’t believe the Bible.
So you got a bit of a problem. Here’s a guy who believes the Bible and the other people who believe the Bible are on the other side of the American Civil War advocating for slavery. So what happens before the Civil War, Charles Hodge would not share a platform with the guys from the South because that would give the impression to people that he agreed with slavery. Neither would he share the platform with the guys who didn’t believe the Bible . So he ended up isolated. And that became the history of Princeton Seminary, which became Westminster Seminary. Because if we’re going to be faithful to the truth, we are going to be isolated, and we’re going to be tempted for the sake of getting a hearing to be with people who are, that will give the impression that we agree with them. So, I mean, a current issue is, should Anglican Bishops go to the Lamberth Conference in London where you’ve got a bunch of bishops that are all advocating homosexuality? do you want to go and dress up in your frillies and stand with them and have your photo taken? What, what’s the story here? do you want to invite them into your pulpit? Do you want to invite them into your home? I mean, where do you draw the line? Yeah. And John is saying, Do not support these traveling missionaries who are advocating a different gospel. Yeah. Whatever that looks like.
Yeah. Cause in that context too, it’s not like, like when you take someone in, it’s not like you’re just letting them in to have an argument with them. They’re coming in to sleep in your house to eat with you to . Yeah. You, you’re support paying for
Em without you, They have nowhere to stay. They can’t conduct their missionary service. Yeah. So why are you facilitating something that is anti Jesus not on?
So, can you explain the anti-Christ stuff here? There’s going to be people ask questions and it’s like, there’s lots of anti-Christ people think there’s only one anti-Christ. Oh, look. So I think
We live in an age of conspiracy, don’t we? ? it’s sort of went overboard during COVID, with a million conspiracy theories. If you look up Antichrist on the web and you wanna listen to sermons about the antichrist, you’re going to hear the greatest rubbish on the, on the planet. and if you come across, oh, I’ll name names Tim La Hay wrote a series because I’m jealous, Confess My Sin. Tim La Hay wrote a series of books called Left Behind. Yeah. 13 Volumes. The first Volume sold something like 13, 15 million copies. imagine what he made out of that at a dollar a book. Yeah. but, have you ever seen such rubbish, he had mapped out the whole second coming down to, you know, the day of the week and who was on which side. And, you know, why are all the bad guys Russians and Romanians?
It wasn’t meant to be fantasy though, right? It wasn’t, it’s not meant to be a factual, It’s his story. It’s his made up novels.
It’s his made up novels about what he believes is the formula for what’s going to happen. And the Antichrist, of course, is, you know, somebody from Eastern Europe, , and the good guys are Americans and Israelites. You know, it’s just, we read into the Bible what we want to read. the antichrist has been in history, the Pope, Napoleon Bonapart, the Kaiser in World War I, Hitler in World War ii, Communism. I mean, you, you know, the United Nations, I think even comes up as a candidate for the Antichrist. one world government with antichrist on top. You know, every generation makes it up according to their own gods, effectively. So here’s your clue. The Greek word anti doesn’t mean what we mean when we say I’m anti vaccination or something. Yeah. You know, the anti-vaxxers
Sort of that you’re against it.
Yeah. It’s not, it’s not. That’s not what anti means in Greek. Anti in Greek means instead of
So anybody who puts up a Christ instead of Jesus is an anti-Christ, a substitute Christ, a an alternate way of salvation, if you will. And there are many anti-Christs.
And they were plural, and they were already there when John wrote the letter. And so what he’s saying is, all of these heretics who have come into your church trying to lead you astray, they’re coming up with an alternative Christ. Hmm. So their Christ isn’t God. That’s, that’s one model of an antichrist, but there’s lots of others. Yep.
well, there are plenty around when Jesus was around before he stayed. Yeah. Lots of Jews coming through your I’m The Christ on the Christ. Yeah. Fires going, Squash, squash.
Wipe out the whole village. So this is, this is what we’ve gotta be realize that those people who preach an alternative gospel that sends people to hell, they are substitutes for Christ. And that’s not loving and that’s not faithful, and that’s not salvation. That’s, that’s terrible. Yeah. So he’s right into the whole church. So you can imagine a, a congregation in a house somewhere in Western Turkey sitting down and the messenger is, or the elders are going to read this letter to the church, and explain to them, that John is just so delighted because their messenger has come back to John to tell him what’s been going on with all of their questions probably. And while they’re telling John what’s been going on, they’ve been telling John that this church has been faithful and he’s so excited he’s written them this packet of letters.
Yep. Which is fantastic. And I can see in this letter, Dad, really, they’re coming together of your head, heart, and hands process here of, you know, you have to believe the right thing. You gotta love one another and all that kind of stuff. And your attitude is just throughout all of that. So it’s just beautiful, really the way it’s, the way it’s laid out. Just a short little thing. If you guys wanna grab the study notes to come and learn more from this letter from John, please come to trainingforliferedeemed.com/91. You can grab the study notes there, make sure you hit the subscribe button, come back and join us again next week. If you’re watching on YouTube, hit the subscribe button as well. You’ll get your notifications. Make sure you hit the bell if you’re there too. That way it actually goes ding when we send out new ones. And we look forward to diving into the first letter of John next week.