Summary: 1 of 2. John supplied his readers with a test for Christian compliance in Jesus’ sonship/humanity/birth. Jesus’ sonship/birth is a test for Christian confession/compliance...But in what way is it tested? Celebrating Jesus’ Birth Tests Our...
TESTING YOUR CHRISTMAS With CHRISTIAN COMPLIANCE-I
— 2John :7-11; 1John 2:22-25; 4:14-16; 5:5-13—
Recently I was invited to the WMU Christmas party. We had a great meal with great fellowship & later we opened some small gifts.
The last thing we all participated in was a Christmas trivia quiz open to everybody there. We found out how much or little we knew about Christmas. Most of the questions dealt with secular traditions surrounding Christmas. But the last half of the trivia was from the Bible...A very different perspective from that of the world!
Our Christmas celebrations say much about what we really believe.
John supplied his readers with a test for Christian compliance in Jesus’ sonship/humanity/birth.
Jesus’ sonship/birth is a test for Christian confession/compliance...
How is faith in Jesus’ birth/sonship a test for Christian compliance?
4 tests of Christian compliance realized thru our celebration of Jesus’ birth/sonship.
1— Celebrating Jesus’ Birth Tests Our...
REWARD SYSTEM or ENTITLEMENT SCHEME(2Jn. :7-11)
Explanation: (2Jn. :7-11) ?What do you work for?
:7—“For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver & an antichrist.”
People who stray from accepting Jesus as having “come in the flesh” are characterized as those who are “deceivers.” The reality is that Jesus absolutely had to take on flesh(Php. 2:6-8; Mt. 1:21-23; Lk. 1:34-35Jn. 1:1-5, 14; 1Jn. 1:1-4; Heb. 2:14-18). There is no other solution to the dilemma between man’s calling & his sin.
Many if asked, “Are you a Christian?” would readily respond affirmatively. But when you get down to their explanation of what it means to be a Christian there is an immense gap between their belief(subjective) & God’s truth(objective).
Christmas is important for the very reason that Jesus’ humanity is key to man’s relationship with God, his salvation & subsequent direction. Christmas is the celebration of all that is accomplished thru Jesus’ taking on human flesh.
Jesus’ “flesh & bones”:
Lk. 24:36-43—“Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, & said to them, “Peace to you.” But they were terrified & frightened, & supposed they had seen a spirit. And He said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts? Behold My hands & My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me & see, for a spirit does not have flesh & bones as you see I have.” When He had said this, He showed them His hands & His feet. But while they still did not believe for joy, & marveled, He said to them, “Have you any food here?” So they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish & some honeycomb. And He took it & ate in their presence.”
These “deceivers” have indeed “gone out” even from the midst of believers(1Jn. 2:18-19). These are evidently people espousing religion of some kind but they obviously deny the actual truth of Christ as revealed by the true God. These have “gone out into the world” at large. Thus the poison of their untruth is spread to a lost & largely unsuspecting humanity. This is why, as faithful Christians, we must get to the crux of what an individual or group believes before we can help them grasp the revealed truth.
Such deceivers are intentionally deceptive & are thus further characterized as “antichrists.”
Though there will be one specific ‘Antichrist’(1Thess. 2:1-12; 1Jn. 2:18; Rev. 13:1-9) in the future, who will play into to the 7yr. Tribulation of the world(Rev. 4-18)—prior to the 1000 yr. reign of Christ on earth & God’s final judgment(Rev. 20)—there are many presently & in our future who hold & will hold the same spirit as antichrist(1Tim. 3:1-9; 4:1-3; 2Pet. 2:1-3; Mat. 24:5, 24).
:8—“Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward.”
Note the change of person from 2nd person plural to 1st person plural. John is joining with his audience(the church) in the labor of refusing to placate the deception of modern antichrists. That which is refused as well as that which is accepted effects all of Christendom.
Mat. 18:18-19—““Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, & whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven.”
?What do you work for?
?Whom do you work for?
“Lose”—apollumi—1) To destroy—1a) To put out of the way entirely, abolish, put an end to ruin, 1b) Render useless, 1c) To kill, 1d) To declare that one must be put to death, 1e) metaph. To devote or give over to eternal misery in hell, 1f) To perish, to be lost, ruined, destroyed; 2) To destroy—2a) To lose. Strong—To destroy fully (reflexively--To perish, or lose), literally or figuratively.