Love / Doctrine

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Message #2

Text:  II John 1:1-13

Intro: 

2 John 1:1-13  The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth; [2] For the truth’s sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever. [3] Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love. [4] I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father. [5] 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. [6] And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it. [7] For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. [8] Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. [9] Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. [10] If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: [11] For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. [12] 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. [13] The children of thy elect sister greet thee. Amen. …

Review:

Last week we began this study by considering John’s Truth Lecture and his Love Lecture.  We discussed two big concepts Truth is like an umbrella- it encompasses the believer in every way.  We also considered that love is Biblical only when it is underneath the umbrella that is truth.  Outside of the covering of truth, love ceases to be love.

I. Corruption of Truth

[7] For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. [8] Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. [9] Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

There is a verse penned by the Apostle Paul that very much shapes the discussion that John gives in our text. I encourage you to turn there with me- I Timothy 3:15.

But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.

This verse is so fundamental to the life and function of a church body, why?  Because it lays it out in the most simple terms.  The church is intended to be the pillar of truth.  Only when truth is held to can the church live out love, mercy, and peace.

Deceivers: comes from the Greek word meaning imposter or misleader. This word appears just a handful of times in the NT, and we see it again over in I Timothy 4:1-

1 Timothy 4:1  Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

Abundance: John says these deceivers have gone out into the world and there are many of them.

Purpose: There intent is to mislead people spiritually.  They are imposters of the truth.  In appearance they seem to have some true motivation but really they seek only to lead people astray from the truth.

Test:  John says the way to identify these false teachers is quite simple.  If the person does not believe that Jesus Christ came as God in the flesh, to this world, then he or she is a deceiver.

Opposer:  John says moreover that these misleaders are not only deceivers but quite literally they are opposers of Christ and God.  According to Strongs the meaning of that term antichristos is opponent of the Messiah.  We often think of that term in reference to that political figure who will one day rise up in the world and be the pawn of Satan.  However, this term is used several times by John and all having to do with our present time.

1 John 2:18  Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

1 John 2:22  Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

1 John 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

The same spirit that will enable the Antichrist of the Tribulation to gain power is the same one today that promotes these little opposers of Christ.

II. Corruption of Love

[10] If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: [11] For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

Love that God despises- worldliness

We have seen the corruption of truth as John speaks about it.  Now we will notice the Corruption of Love.  First consider with me a slight detour: there is love that God despises!  There is love that God feels so strongly about, he hates it.  We hear love emphasized so much but rarely is it preached those things that God hates.

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

The Greek word translated ‘enemy’ means to hate, as in a foe.  God so much despises this that he speaks strongly and makes it so clear that to choose and live this love is to make yourself an enemy to Jehovah.

So what love does God despise?  The love of the world.  To love this world is to identify yourself with something that is anti-God.

1 John 2:15-17 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. [16] For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. [17] And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

What is the world? It is not the physical planet.  It is not the people living on the planet.  It is that spiritual power that rules this earth, the ideology that seeks to control everything upon this earth.  As John references it, the world is that system in place to blatantly defy and stand against God.

Two can not coexist. A person can not love God and love this world.  It is impossible John says.  If the love of the world is in a person, then the love of the Father will not be in them.

Love with no spiritual convictions.

Love of the world is Corrupted Love.  But John also speaks in our text to a love that is Corrupted.  [10] If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: [11] For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

It seems this woman John is writing to would entertain and care for traveling preachers.  The key to everything John says in this verse is that phrase – ‘and bring not this doctrine’.  If these preachers do not hold to the truth that Christ came in the flesh, into this world, then avoid them.

Unfortunately this is where we find love corrupted so frequently today.  Believers who have long ago accepted what they hear about love and have no concept that what they are loving is truly opposed to God.  Another form of corrupted love is love absent conviction.  Church, there are some things we should completely avoid and we must exercise enough personal conviction to take a stand.

Illustration:  (sports)

Growing up I played baseball, pretty much through all of the levels city leagues where we lived.  I enjoyed playing baseball, regardless of whether I was very good, I enjoyed it.  My parents enjoyed it on some level, and my Dad as a pastor could meet and get to know people.  However, around my freshman year we reached a breaking point.  Practices continued to conflict more and more with church services, and the head coach of our team was using profanity prolifically.  My Father had enough and went to him privately and I stepped away from the team.  Some would say that was not very loving…  I submit to you that love absent convictions is no longer love.  For my Father it was a conviction- when the church doors are open, we will be at church.  It was a conviction- uncontrolled profanity is something that is not good for my child. 

Application:

How do I know if something I love is outside of truth?

  • Does it provoke others to glorify God?
  • Does it give legitimacy to a false teacher?
  • Does it violate the instructions Christ has given to His church?
  • Does it require a wife to step out from under the authority of her husband?
  • Does it cause a fellow believer to stumble?
  • Does it conflict in any way with sound doctrine?
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