2 John 7-11 – “For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. 8 Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward. 9 Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; 11 for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.”  NASB [Emphasis mine]

It is more than a message about tolerance because we are to love everybody.  Yet, there are multiple warnings in Scripture about avoiding those who promote false doctrine and practice evilI’ve been castigated by well-meaning believers who tell me that I should tolerate no matter what a person believes, so long as they are sincere. 

Let me address that in two ways:

  • According to the Constitution and Bill of Rights of the United States of America, everyone has a right to believe what they choose.  They are free to practice their religion without interference from the government.  Of course, limitations might be imposed if their practice becomes a “Jonestown and Jim Jones” type cult that endangers the lives of multitudes of people.  Otherwise, they are at liberty to practice their religion.  So, in that sense, I tolerate everybody, although I may disagree with them entirely and want nothing to do with them.
  • Spiritually, biblically, and from a Christian perspective, this passage will not allow me to abandon my core convictions and faith.  It demands that I adhere to sound doctrine regarding Jesus and His coming in the flesh and all that goes with that in purchasing our redemption from sin.  I’m well aware of the perversions that have been put out there, such as “Jesus Christ Superstar,” the false theories that Jesus had sexual relations with Mary Magdalene and did not die on the Cross but was quietly eased out of the country and lived and raised a family in the European area. 

Please take note of verses 10-11 in this passage and their unmistakable message to the followers of Christ if you are IN Christ and believe that Jesus came in the flesh.  That He lived a sinless life.  That He gave his life a ransom for whosoever will.  That He rose on the third day and ascended to the right hand of the Father, making intercession for us.  That He will come again to receive us unto Himself for Eternity.  If you embrace those truths, then this is a message for you.  If any group comes to you with another message that dilutes, perverts, or denies that truth as presented in the Bible, then John tells you how to respond.

Do not receive that person into your house.  (That is important because the custom at that time was to entertain strangers and wayfarers as a way of life, always showing kindness and generosity).

Please do not give them a greeting.  That goes directly to something that every Hebrew and then most Christians understood that comes directly from Numbers 6:22-7:1. 

Then the LORD spoke to Moses, 23 “Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, ‘Thus you shall bless the sons of Israel. You shall say to them:  24 The LORD bless you and keep you; 25 The LORD make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; 26 The LORD lift up His countenance on you And give you peace.’ 27 “So they shall invoke My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them.” NASB)

If you have studied “The Blessing,” you realize how important this was in the life of every Hebrew.  It also became imperative for many of the 1st-century believers to have someone speak The Blessing upon them when they greeted each other.  John advises us to follow the directive of Psalms 129:8 – “Nor do those who pass by say, “The blessing of the LORD be upon you; We bless you in the name of the LORD.” NASB

There are many cults and false religions today; from time to time, some of them make their way to my front door.  I follow this passage and usually attempt to witness to them about CHRIST, the Son of the Living God; when I do, they run like scared jackrabbits. 

I would be the first to acknowledge that I do not know all truth revealed in the Bible, but I do know HIM, who is the TRUTH!  Therefore, I say without shame that I am a follower of Christ and believe that He came in the flesh and is truly the Only Begotten of the Father.  He is the one who died for my sins, and through Him, I have Life Eternal!

I encourage you to make 1 Peter 3:15-17 a foundational principle in your life: “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16 having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. 17 For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.” NKJV

This is my prayer for you: “May the Lord Bless you richly as you go through your day in Him and give you a spirit of meekness and gentleness that exudes His Love so that all you encounter see Him in you.”  I do not suggest being mean, rude, or vicious, but I recommend that you know what you believe and stand by those convictions without wavering!  

May the Blessings of the Lord be upon you this day and every day!

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