Summary: Warnings & Encouragement. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email:

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Reading: 1 John chapter 2 verses 18-19.


• 4 boys in secondary school had a reputation of playing truant;

• One morning they turned up very, very late for their lesson,

• They told the teacher they were late because the car bringing them had a puncture.

• Looking at them they could tell that the teacher was not too impressed.

• Nervously they started to embellish their story by saying;

• “Honest sir, in fact we had to fix it for ourselves so that we could get here”.

• The more that they spoke, the less convincing they sounded

• So the teacher said to them; “Show me your hands”,

• They were spotlessly clean

• And so he decided to get to the real truth.

He ordered each boy to stand in the corner of the room facing inwards:

• He gave them all a small piece of paper and a pen,

• And told them of his simple test to determine the truth!

• “One question I want you to write the answer to it”, said the teacher.

• “Which wheel had the puncture?”

• If those boys were found out not to be telling the truth:

• Then they would have to face the consequences!

So far in this short letter:

• The apostle John has warned the Christians about:

• The conflict between light and darkness (chapter 1 verse 1 to chapter 2 verse 6)

• The conflict between love and hatred (chapter 2 verses 7-17).

• In this section this morning;

• The apostle John warns them about another conflict,

• The conflict between truth and error.

The issue in this section is truth-or consequences!


• A pig ate his fill of acorns under an oak tree and then started to root around the tree.

• A crow remarked,

• “You should not do this. If you lay bare the roots, the tree will wither and die.”

• “Let it die,” said the pig. “Who cares as long as there are acorns?”

• When we ignore or reject the truth;

• That course of action will always lead to negative consequences.

• The apostle John is writing to warns these Christians;

• That the actions false teachers will only cause them destruction and death.

Now Before we pull out our key thoughts this morning:

• I need to explain two unusual phrases that occur in verse 18:

• An understanding of these will help us with the other verses.

(a). "The last hour".

• K.J.B: "The last time".

• Amplified: “It is the last time” (hour, the end of this age).

• The term that is used is describing a kind of time,

• Not a duration of time.


Chapter 2 verses 12-14.

• John wrote to three groups of people.

• ‘Little children’, ‘young men’, ‘Fathers’

• It was not physical ages but spiritual ages that he had in mind.

• E.g. ‘Little children’ were recent converts who needed milk not solid food to eat

In a similar way John uses this term:

• N.I.V: "The last hour". K.J.B: "The last time".

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