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Summary: The Apostle John’s warnings about false teachers and how we should treat them. Also his encouragement to stick to the basics as they were originally taught.

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The tiny Epistles of John contain great wisdom for those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Today we will be looking at John’s teachings from Second John as he warns us about those who would try to water down Christianity or in other subtly ways lead Christians astray.

2John 1:7 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. (8) Watch out that you do not lose what you have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. (9) 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. (10) If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take him into your house or welcome him. (11) Anyone who welcomes him shares in his wicked work.

Here we have the nucleus of John’s letter. Within in this center there are two very important warning for the church then and now. The way John says it it appears as though these warnings concern threats from outside the local church. Let’s look.

2John 1:7 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. (8) Watch out that you do not lose what you have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully.

For clarity sake here let’s look at the Amplified Bible’s translation of verse 7. “For many imposters—seducers, deceivers and false leaders—have gone out into the world, men who will not acknowledge (confess, admit) the coming of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, in bodily form; such a one is the imposter, the seducer, the deceiver, the false leader, the antagonist of Christ—and the antichrist.” (2John 1:7 AMP)

The Amplified says this with absolute clarity, there are many fakers, phonies, frauds and pretenders that have gone out into the (church) world. These are men who will not admit that Jesus came in the flesh. [Remember the Gnostic teaching that God Who is Spirit could not have occupied a mortal (sinful body) and therefore could not have come in the flesh]. John said a person who will not admit Christ came in the flesh is one who seeks to deceive (betray and lie to) the church and is in fact the antichrist.

(8) Watch out that you do not lose what you have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully.

Be very careful that you are not taken in by them and lose what you have worked for in Christ. Be careful so that you may receive your full reward.

“Don’t listen to them!” would be a more common way of saying this. “Don’t get suckered into their lies.” “Don’t become diverted from the truth.”

(9) 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.

A caution here those who say they have further revelation beyond the Bible (the Gnostics and many others today) are guilty of running on ahead and they don’t have the guidance of the Holy Spirit; they listen only to worldly spirits. But one who continues to live steadfastly in the teachings of Christ, not wavering from His word, has both the Father and the Son (and the Holy Spirit).


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