The 2nd Epistle Of John


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Bible Class 2nd Epistle of John 10 June 2009

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The 2nd Epistle Of John

  1. 1. The 2nd Epistle of John Laindon 10 June 2009
  2. 2. Background <ul><li>Author: “the elder” - not named in the letter but internal evidence of consistent style and phrasing with 1 John and John’s Gospel. </li></ul><ul><li>Recipient: “the elect lady and her children” </li></ul><ul><li>Location: probably written from Ephesus. </li></ul><ul><li>Date: prior to AD 95 because no persecution (of Domitian) mentioned. Around AD 90. </li></ul><ul><li>Addressed to individuals (contrast with 1 John as a General epistle) </li></ul><ul><li>Both epistles illustrate real situations in which the principles in 1 John are applied </li></ul>
  3. 3. Principle from 1 John In Christ Whoever keeps his commandments abides in him and he in them If we love one another, God abides in us…whoever abides in love abides in God … yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Whoever does not love abides in death
  4. 4. The Elder <ul><li>The Apostle John </li></ul><ul><li>Elders being appointed in ecclesias to continue leadership after the Apostles (Titus 1:5, 2 Tim 2:2) </li></ul><ul><li>But John was as Peter in 1 Pet 5:1 – a witness of Christ’s sufferings and glory </li></ul><ul><li>John perhaps the last remaining Apostle and eye-witness, hence THE elder </li></ul>
  5. 5. The Elect Lady & Children <ul><li>Lady is a title ( kyria fem. of Lord) </li></ul><ul><li>2 possibilities </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A specific woman and her children </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A figurative reference to an ecclesia </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Suggest 2. because of phrases like: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ I found of thy children walking in truth” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ the children of thy elect sister greet thee” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Also consistent with other usage: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>John’s words to ecclesias in Rev 2:4, 22,23 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2 Cor 11:2 “espoused you to one husband” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eph 5:24-27 – wives as ecclesia is to Christ </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. V2-4 Introduction <ul><li>V2 - love springs from the Truth which binds them together </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ whom I love in the truth; (and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth) ; For the truth's sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>V3 – salutation </li></ul><ul><li>V4 – “some of your children” (ESV) “from among thy children”(Roth) </li></ul>
  7. 7. V5-6 A new commandment <ul><li>“ And now I beseech thee, lady, (not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning), that we love one another. (And this is love, that we walk after his commandments). This is the command-ment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.” </li></ul><ul><li>Commandment = Love = Commandment </li></ul><ul><li>This should be at the centre of all we do </li></ul>
  8. 8. V7-8 Deceivers <ul><li>V7 “have gone out into the world” (ESV, Roth) </li></ul><ul><li>As 1 John 2:18-19 “they went out from us” </li></ul><ul><li>“ confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh” – Pre-Gnosticism again </li></ul>“ Those who denied the reality of the incarnation by saying that Jesus only appeared to have a human body , The heresy John confronts here was a forerunner of 2 nd century Gnosticism, which taught that matter is essentially evil and spirit is essentially good. This dualistic error caused the false teachers to deny the incarnation of Christ. The true God, they taught, could never indwell a material body of flesh and blood, and therefore the human body that Jesus supposedly possessed was not real” Nelson’s
  9. 9. V9 the doctrine of Christ In Christ He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God.
  10. 10. V10-11 “bid him Godspeed” <ul><li>Usually quoted in context of withdrawal from Bro/Sis </li></ul><ul><li>Some unfounded ideas about transfer of guilt based on these words </li></ul><ul><li>The direct and wider context shows a more positive message about personal responsibility </li></ul>
  11. 11. V10-11 “bid him Godspeed” <ul><li>“ bid him Godspeed” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Gk chairo = be glad, rejoice (55/68) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>As v4: “I rejoiced greatly” </li></ul></ul>“ be not receiving him home and “joy to thee” do not say; for he that biddeth him rejoice hath fellowship with his wicked works” (Rotherham) Gk oikia = a residence (not oikos which has more extensive meaning and is used of spiritual house) Not a passive relationship, but active support, wishing them success their efforts -> equally guilty
  12. 12. V10-11 “bid him Godspeed” <ul><li>Direct context from v7 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ many deceivers have gone out into the world” </li></ul></ul>V10 “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine,” Apply equally to ourselves in similar situations Can it be applied to wider, different situations? If the Apostles did so, then YES If the Apostles did not do so, then NO
  13. 13. V10-11 “bid him Godspeed” <ul><li>The Apostolic Example </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Did not separate from ecclesias or instruct it even when significant errors persisted. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Circumcision is required to be saved </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Acts 15 Council ruling late 40’s AD, still present Titus 1:10 (66AD) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>There is no resurrection </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1 Cor 15 “some among you” (56AD) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Still present in 2 Tim 2:18 (67AD) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hymenaeus was denounced in 1 Tim (63AD) still overthrowing the faith of some in 2 Tim </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. V10-11 “bid him Godspeed” <ul><li>The Apostolic Example (contd) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Later evidence of rejection of Apostles authority </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2 Cor, 2 Tim, 2 Peter, 3 John, Jude, Revelation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Additional errors (Jesus not come in flesh) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What did Apostles do? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They visited problem ecclesias to help deal with issues </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They wrote to them repeatedly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They sent other sound brethren to problem ecclesias </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They gave instructions to reject named individuals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They rejected named individuals themselves </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They prayed without ceasing for the ecclesias </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They taught sound doctrine, contending for the faith </li></ul></ul>Though part of a body containing error, in no way can they be accused of ‘bidding it Godspeed’
  15. 15. In Christ Whoever keeps his commandments abides in him and he in them If we love one another, God abides in us…whoever abides in love abides in God … yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Whoever does not love abides in death
  16. 16. A positive message <ul><li>Personal responsibility </li></ul><ul><li>Resist error AND build and edify </li></ul><ul><li>We can do the same </li></ul><ul><li>“ Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” (1 Cor 11:1) </li></ul><ul><li>Jesus’ parables of the hireling and wheat and the tares </li></ul><ul><li>Be less driven by fear of tainting, more by love and edification </li></ul>
  17. 17. And Finally…v12 <ul><li>“Having many things to write unto you, I would not write with paper and ink: but I trust to come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be full.” </li></ul>