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Tag Archives: Heresy

Peter & John — 2 John

2 John [NLT]
1 This letter is from John, the elder.
I am writing to the chosen lady and to her children, whom I love in the truth—as does everyone else who knows the truth— 2 because the truth lives in us and will be with us forever.
3 Grace, mercy, and peace, which come from God the Father and from Jesus Christ—the Son of the Father—will continue to be with us who live in truth and love.
4 How happy I was to meet some of your children and find them living according to the truth, just as the Father commanded.
5 I am writing to remind you, dear friends, that we should love one another. This is not a new commandment, but one we have had from the beginning. 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.
7 I say this because many deceivers have gone out into the world. They deny that Jesus Christ came in a real body. Such a person is a deceiver and an antichrist. 8 Watch out that you do not lose what we have worked so hard to achieve. Be diligent so that you receive your full reward. 9 Anyone who wanders away from this teaching has no relationship with God. But anyone who remains in the teaching of Christ has a relationship with both the Father and the Son.
10 If anyone comes to your meeting and does not teach the truth about Christ, don’t invite that person into your home or give any kind of encouragement. 11 Anyone who encourages such people becomes a partner in their evil work.
12 I have much more to say to you, but I don’t want to do it with paper and ink. For I hope to visit you soon and talk with you face to face. Then our joy will be complete.
13 Greetings from the children of your sister, chosen by God.

Dear God, as I look at all of these passages the either reference Peter and/or John or were written by them, I am trying to figure out what I can learn about them and myself through who they were and how they fit into your kingdom and plan. In this case, 2 John is pretty short and has two main messages: Love others and reject deceivers. What a very succinct message. It must have been very much on his heart and important to him because he took the time to sit down and write it and send it on ahead of his visit.

One of the hard things to know is if I have been deceived or am deceiving others. Is my theology errant in any way that is material to your kingdom and your plan? Do I espouse beliefs that cause harm to your children? Are my thoughts on homosexuality, denominations, politics, or salvation in any way against your will? Do I ever cause harm to others when I share them?

Father, teach me. Help me to learn about you. I believe in you. I believe in the risen Christ. I do my best to love others, offer grace, and represent you to those around me. Raise up people/books/articles/etc. in my life that you will use to teach me your truth. Give me ears to hear. Give me eyes to see. Give me the words you want me to speak.

In Jesus’ name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2019 in 2 John, Peter and John

 

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Peter & John — 2 Peter 2:10b-22

2 Peter 2:10b-22 NIV
[10b] Bold and arrogant, they are not afraid to heap abuse on celestial beings; [11] yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not heap abuse on such beings when bringing judgment on them from the Lord. [12] But these people blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like unreasoning animals, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like animals they too will perish. [13] They will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done. Their idea of pleasure is to carouse in broad daylight. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their pleasures while they feast with you. [14] With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning; they seduce the unstable; they are experts in greed—an accursed brood! [15] They have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam son of Bezer, who loved the wages of wickedness. [16] But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey—an animal without speech—who spoke with a human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness. [17] These people are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. [18] For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of the flesh, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. [19] They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for “people are slaves to whatever has mastered them.” [20] If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and are overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning. [21] It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them. [22] Of them the proverbs are true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed returns to her wallowing in the mud.”

Dear God, I think my temptation here is to think about what others do and how they might teach heresy and not take this passage and ask myself if any of it applies to me. Are the things that I promote in error in any way? Do I water down your truth? Do I find the right balance between your mercy and your righteousness?

Here’s an example. A couple of weeks ago I was talking with someone I really like, but I only see him every couple of years. When I saw him he told me that since I had seen him he had been divorced because of his wife’s unwillingness to deal with her addictions and infidelity on her part. He then told me that he is dating someone else and, in the course of the conversation I deduced that they are living together. I just listened and didn’t make note of it either way, but it made me a little uncomfortable. He works in a Christian setting and a lot of people will look to him as an example. Is there a problem with what he and his girlfriend are doing? Should I have said something?

There are countless other examples, and I’m sure there are things that I do on a daily basis that grieve you—some of which I’m aware and some that I’m not. Life is complicated. Each moment can be complicated. Sometimes my foolish selfishness takes over and I take my will back from you.

Father, before I go after the speck in my neighbor’s eye, help me to deal with and remove the plank in my own. Be glorified through me so that others might be drawn to you and that your kingdom will come and your will will be done.

In Jesus’ name I pray,

Amen

 
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Posted by on January 30, 2019 in 2 Peter, Peter and John

 

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Emails to God – Confronting Heresy (John 1:14-18)

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

15 (John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’”) 16 Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.

Dear God, why am I afraid to answer the door to a Jehovah’s Witness or Mormon? Why am I nervous about defending my theology to them when theirs is so obviously flawed? I talk about wanting to be a better evangelist, but I won’t even speak out when a heretic comes to my door. What’s up with that?

I was driving to my house the other day when I thought I spotted some Jehovah’s Witnesses about a block from my house. My first set of thoughts were, Get to the house, close the garage, close the blinds, and don’t answer the door. Pretend like I’m not home. But my next thoughts focused around the conversations I have had with Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons in the past and the apologetics I have gotten into regarding defending Christianity against their heresy. Could I remember them? Should I meet the challenge at my door?

As it turned out, they never came, but I know that, if they had knocked on my door, I would not have opened it. I would have remained silent until they went away. Is that really the example I want to set for my children? Is that really what you are calling me to? Do you not want them to know the truth, and would you not want to use me to deliver it to them when given the chance?

Father, there are times when I feel so pathetic in this area. There are things about my personality that are great, and there are things that I cannot stand. This area falls into the latter. Please remind me of this moment. As I read this passage and the truth about who Jesus was, is, and is to come, help me to find my confidence and faith in it, and help me to be at peace in the knowledge that, at your core, you, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are one God, and I am your servant.

 
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Posted by on December 13, 2012 in John

 

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