February 25. 2 John
This short little letter was perhaps written quickly because John had heard that his beloved churches were welcoming into their midst a group of people who were teaching that Jesus had not actually really come to earth as a human being. This would have horrified the disciple who had literally lived with Jesus day in and day out for three entire years. Can you imagine if someone joined your church and declared themselves to be a member and started stating boldly that actually, Jesus was an alien from the planet Mars??? NO. That is not who Jesus was and that is not what your church believes. We can't have people claiming to be Christians and then so directly denying the basic tenets of our faith. This is why John is concerned that the churches are welcoming people who are telling untruths about Christ.
We can disagree about a lot of things as Christians. We don't have to like the same style of music or the same decorations in the sanctuary. We might prefer a scholarly pastor over a shouting pastor. But these differences do not in any way indicate that one or the other of us is not a follower of Christ. We are unique people with unique opinions. However, there are some non-negotiable facts about Christianity and among them is the fact that Jesus, the Lord we follow, was real. Right? So I can understand John's concern over this matter.
Notice how he starts, though. He reminds his dear ones to follow the truth and to love. These twin commands are so important to John they show up every time he writes. We must know the truth about Christ and we must love one another in the faith. These twin commands are still so valuable today, aren't they?
My verse: 2 John 6. "Love means doing what God has commanded us, and he has commanded us to love one another, just as you heard from the beginning."
My response: Loving God means obedience to Him - it's not loving to ignore the commands of my King. And what is His greatest command? To love Him and then one another. John won't let us forget this, and I'm so very glad. Lord, teach me to love You and others, more and more!