December 27: 2 John & 3 John
4 I rejoiced greatly to find some of your children walking in the truth, just as we were commanded by the Father. 5 And now I ask you, dear lady—not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the beginning—that we love one another. 6 And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in it. 7 For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. Such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist. 8 Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward. 9 Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, 11 for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.
2 John, verses 4-11
11 Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God. 12 Demetrius has received a good testimony from everyone, and from the truth itself. We also add our testimony, and you know that our testimony is true.
3 John, verses 11-12
As the apostolic years began to draw to a close, we find that already there was trouble in the church. John, who writes the wonderful book of 1 John dealing with love, gently encourages believers to walk faithfully with God.
In 2 John, John encourages the "elect lady" to walk in love, and to be careful to not be deceived by the false teachers who come around teaching errors regarding the Lord Jesus Christ. In 3 John, Christians are encouraged to imitate good and not evil.
So many centuries later, we face the same issues in our churches. When we become Christians, we must constantly guard our faith by studying the Word of God and developing a closeness to the Lord through prayer. How easily we can be led away from the Lord, especially when we have been neglecting the very means that God gives us to remain close to Him. Then, like the "elect lady" we must walk in love, and yet we must not be deceived by those who twist and bend the truths of the Word.
In our culture, there are so many different churches and denominations, that it is often hard to determine a good church from a bad church. So, what is the answer? The truth is found in the Word of God. Read the Word, study the Word, memorize the Word, and engulf every area of your life with Biblical truths. Then, pray for wisdom from the God to discern right from wrong; pray that God will keep you from being led away "by every wind of doctrine."
Do not make the mistake of believing that sin only exists outside of the doors of your church. Unfortunately, we carry the seeds of sins with us wherever we go, as does every one else. Only through close fellowship with the Lord, the study of His Word, and prayer can we possibly be kept from the strong arms of deception by Satan and his angels.
We have a very Good God! Never leave Him or forsake Him; bind His word upon your hearts and your garments; surround yourself with truth and godliness, through the power of the Lord Jesus Christ. Pray that the Holy Spirit will guide you and guard you against sin and destruction.
God Bless You,