“Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.” (2 John 1:3)
among those early travelers in Christ’s time, were false teachers who denied that Jesus was the Messiah. This is why the letter of 2 John tells its readers there is a time to refuse to extend hospitality. John had said in a previous letter that these false teachers were ‘antichrist-denying the Father and the Son.” In 2 John he elaborated on this, telling his readers that whoever believes Jesus is the Messiah “has both the Father and the Son.”
Then he warned, “If anyone come to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take them into your house or welcome them.” To extend hospitality to someone preaching a false gospel would actually help keep people separated from God.
John’s second letter shows a “flip side” of God’s love. We serve a God who welcomes everyone with open arms. But genuine love won’t enable those who deceitfully harm themselves and others. God wraps His arms around those who come to Him in repentance, but he never embraces a lie.
- How can you reflect God’s love in your relationships today?
- What issues might you need to confront in your own life or in the lives of others?
Father, You love us in Your truth. Help us extend that love to others with the unwavering grace that comes only from Your Spirit.
2 John 1: 1-11
The elder,\To the lady chosen by God and to her children, whom I love in the truth, and not I only, but also all who know the truth, because of the truth, which lives in us and will be with us forever:
Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.
It has given me great joy to find some of your children walking in the truth, just as the Father commanded us.\and now, dear lady, I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning. I ask that we love one another. And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.
I say this because many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist.
Watch out that you do not lose what we have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching do not take them into your house or welcome them. Anyone who welcomes them shares in their wicked work.
The author of 1, 2, and 3 John isn’t explicitly identified. First John has no author identification at all, and 2 and 3 john simply refer to the author as “the elder”. However, there’s much evidence to link these three letters to John the disciple. For example, the gospel of Joh, which is attributed to John the disciple, and the epistles of John all share similar themes. In today’s reading from 2 John, three key ideas echo themes in John’s gospel: truth, and love leading to obedience.