Faithlife Sermons

Can You Handle the Truth?

Two Part Sermon Series from 2 and 3 John   •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  40:52
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2 John 1–13 HCSB
The Elder: To the elect lady and her children: I love all of you in the truth—and not only I, but also all who have come to know the truth — because of the truth that remains in us and will be with us forever. Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love. I was very glad to find some of your children walking in the truth, in keeping with a command we have received from the Father. So now I urge you, dear lady—not as if I were writing you a new command, but one we have had from the beginning—that we love one another. And this is love: that we walk according to His commands. This is the command as you have heard it from the beginning: you must walk in love. Many deceivers have gone out into the world; they do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. Watch yourselves so you don’t lose what we have worked for, but that you may receive a full reward. Anyone who does not remain in Christ’s teaching but goes beyond it, does not have God. The one who remains in that teaching, this one has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your home, and don’t say, “Welcome,” to him; for the one who says, “Welcome,” to him shares in his evil works. Though I have many things to write to you, I don’t want to do so with paper and ink. Instead, I hope to be with you and talk face to face so that our joy may be complete. The children of your elect sister send you greetings.
Truth is important. Love is important. Right living is important.
You will find these two letters, 2nd John and 3rd John, to be pointed, direct, brief and specific. They focus many of the things taught in 1 John into specific situations being faced.
The Elder- Held to be John as the aged man, not necessarily an office holder.
The Elect lady- I believe this is a church and her children are its members. 2 John is the only place this word for lady “kyria” is used. It could be a Christian family, but it seems to me the instruction in the letter fits better as a church. It could also be that this lady is hosting a church in her home. Note the pronouns in verses 4 and 5 are all singular, but plural in 5, 6, 8, 10, 12. Then changes back to singular in 13. I think it should be viewed this way. The beginning and end are speaking of a church as a unit, and the teaching in the letter is to the people who make up the unit.
truth and love- this matches the themes of 1 John.
Love-hate
Light-darkness
life-death
lie- truth
This will show up in the body of this letter.

Truth is to be practiced

When he says that some of the children are walking in truth, I don’t think he means others aren’t. The emphasis is on that he FOUND SOME.
3 times (verse 4, verse 6x2) we see walking in truth.
The word walk can mean literally walk, or is used figuratively as well
John 12 Jesus used to talk about walking in spiritual darkness
Acts 21 walk according to customs
Romans 6.4 walk in newness of life
Romans 8.4 walk according to the spirit.
Romans 13.13 walk properly as in the daytime.
Romans 14.15 walk in love (Eph 5.2)
2 Co 5.7 walk by faith
2 Co. 10.3 walk in flesh, but dont battle in the flesh
Gal 5.16 walk by spirit
Ephesians 2.2 used to walk in flsh
Eph. 2.10 walk in good works
Eph 4.1 walk in a manner worthy of your calling
Eph 4.17 dont walk like the Gentiles do
Eph 5.17 walk wisely
I’ve only listed about 1/2 walk is used to speak of how we live out our lives.
Not lie down, or sit down, or sleep the Christian life away, but WALK. The Christian life is an active faith to be exercised properly.
You will also notice a strong connection between love and walking in the truth and keeping the commandments.
Several things to say about this.
Christianity is belief. What? Christianity is a set of truths to be believed… verse 7 (deceivers teaching false things about MESSIAH coming in the flesh)
Christianity is love. Why? God is love, we are called to love Christ and lover others, and we can’t redefine love.
Christianity is action. how? again we walk in truth… we practice truth. we live out truth.

Truth is to be protected

2 John 7–11 HCSB
Many deceivers have gone out into the world; they do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. Watch yourselves so you don’t lose what we have worked for, but that you may receive a full reward. Anyone who does not remain in Christ’s teaching but goes beyond it, does not have God. The one who remains in that teaching, this one has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your home, and don’t say, “Welcome,” to him; for the one who says, “Welcome,” to him shares in his evil works.
There are three imperative commands in these verses. One is positive and two are negative.

Watch yourselves

This is a caution.
2 John 7 HCSB
Many deceivers have gone out into the world; they do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist.
There are false teachers out there (verse 7)
Be careful that you don’t “go out of bounds” (verse 9)
2 John 9 HCSB
Anyone who does not remain in Christ’s teaching but goes beyond it, does not have God. The one who remains in that teaching, this one has both the Father and the Son.
Note the warnings.
2 John 8 HCSB
Watch yourselves so you don’t lose what we have worked for, but that you may receive a full reward.
1. Lose reward you worked for (Not salvation, but rewards)
2. Goes beyond (active particple) this person has gone beyond the scope of Christian teaching and living and continues to do so. They don’t have a relationship with God.

Don’t Receive

2 John 10 HCSB
If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your home, and don’t say, “Welcome,” to him;
Again, this is not that you accidentally took someone into your home who was a false teacher. This is present active… you are receiving someone YOU KNOW is false. I think in our day, this could include radio, TV preachers, and some authors. But the purest form hear is that Christian Hospitality does NOT extend to false teachers.

Don’t Welcome

2 John 10–11 HCSB
If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your home, and don’t say, “Welcome,” to him; for the one who says, “Welcome,” to him shares in his evil works.
John dealt with false teaching so differently than we do. I hear people say all the time, “well he may not preach about sin, but I like to hear what he has to say.”
We are not talking about minor points of doctrinal difference, but a major departure from the faith.
John not only tells us what to not do but why… .you share in his evil works.
Remember here that hospitality to strangers was a hallmark of Christian faith. We are even told to welcome strangers because sometimes it could be an angel. But John is now placing limits on that hospitality toward a notable and ongoing false teacher. If you welcome him in your home, you share in his evil WORKS (what we believe and teach shows up in how we live.
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