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Sermon #2 — 2nd John Series
Title: Essential Doctrine
Text: 2nd John 7-11
Subject: The Doctrine of Christ
Date: Tuesday Evening — June 3, 2014
Readings: Bob Poncer and Bob Duff
Let’s read 2nd John verses 7-11 together, 2nd John 7-11. My subject tonight is Essential Doctrine. That’s the title of my message — Essential Doctrine (2nd John 7-11).
2 John 1:7-11 (7) Many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. (8) Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. (9) Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. (10) If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: (11) For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
John, like the other apostles and like our Lord Jesus himself, tells us plainly that there are both true preachers and false preachers in this world, messengers of God and messengers of Satan, servants of Christ and servants of anti-christ. We will be wise to seek wisdom and grace to know which preachers are true and which are false.
God the Holy Ghost tells us that the faith of God’s elect is a “common faith” (Titus 1:4) and that our salvation in Christ is a “common salvation” (Jude 3). That simply means that there are some things commonly known and believed among God’s elect, some things all true believers hold in common, some things all true preachers of the Gospel hold in common.
1st — They all believe the Word of God. David said, “I love Thy Word.” — “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path!”
2 Timothy 3:16-17 (16) All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: (17) That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
All true believers and all true preachers have this in common. We believe the Word of God. We love, cherish, and delight in Christ and believe the Word of God. — “Thou has magnified Thy Word above all Thy name!”
2nd — All true believers and all true preachers of the Gospel reverence, fear, and worship the one true living God. There is no room for compromise here. We fear God and hold Him in great reverence. The Scripture says, “Holy and Reverend is His name.” We bow to God as God, worship God as God, and adore God as God.
3rd — All true believers and all true preachers of the Gospel are conscience of their sins before God. We say with David, “My sins are ever before me. Against Thee and Thee only have I sinned and done this evil in Thy sight.” We cry with the Psalmist, “Have mercy upon me O God, according to Thy loving kindness and Thy tender mercies; blot out my transgressions. Purge me with hyssop; wash me and I shall be clean.”
Every believer, whether in the pulpit or the pew, is aware of and confesses his sin. We cast ourselves on the mercy of God in Christ Jesus. We do not try to wash our sins away in water or purge our sins with sacraments or make ourselves holy by our own merit and works of righteousness. Saved people confess their sins to God (1 John 1:9).
1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
We do not try to hide our nakedness with fig leaves of works. We trust Christ. Trusting Christ, resting in Christ, we draw all we have from that blessed fountain of grace and mercy which is Jesus Christ the Lord.
4th — All true believers have an understanding of and a love for the person and work of Christ. Listen to me: — True preachers and true believers are not confused in regard to who Jesus Christ is. They are not confused about what he did, why he did it, and where he is now. They know who he is. They have an understanding of and a great love for the person and work of Jesus Christ which is called in the Scriptures, “The doctrine of Christ.”
John summed it up like this in 1 John 5:20.
1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.
Every true believer and every true preacher has an understanding of “the doctrine of Christ.” He knows, believes, and rejoices in “the doctrine of Christ.” With these things in mind, look at our text again.
In verse 7 the apostle John warns us that “many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. — This is a deceiver and an antichrist!” These are religious people, preachers, people who are very active in religious service.
· But they are “Deceivers!”
· They are “False Prophets” (2 Peter 2:1-2).
2 Peter 2:1-3 (1) But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. (2) And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. (3) And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
· They are “Ministers of Satan” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15).
2 Corinthians 11:13-15 (13) For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. (14) And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. (15) Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
These deceivers are people “who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.” — John does not say they “confess not that Christ was born.” He says, they “confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.” You were born, and I was born; but Christ was not born. He is come in the flesh!
Notice that John is using the present tense. He does not say Christ came in the flesh. He says, “Christ is come in the flesh.” Really, this is a present participle. John is saying, — The deceivers confess not that Jesus Christ is coming in the flesh. — The chief error of all religious deceivers has to do with the person and work of our dear Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
1 John 4:1-3 (1) Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. (2) Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: (3) And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
Here are five vital statements, five vital facts, five matters of essential doctrine.
1. Our Savior came in the flesh; but he existed before he came.
He who is our Savior is the eternal I AM, Almighty God, the Everlasting Father! He is the Creator of all things (John 1:1-3).
John 1:1-3 (1) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (2) The same was in the beginning with God. (3) All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Not only is he the eternal God, from who all things sprang, his “goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (Micah 5:2). — His work is a work performed from eternity. — “Lo! I come!”
· An Eternal Covenant!
· An Eternal Surety!
· An Eternal Salvation!
2. God the Son came into this world in real humanity (John 1:14; 2 Corinthians 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5).
John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
2 Corinthians 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
Galatians 4:4-5 (4) But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, (5) To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
3. The Lord Jesus came into this world being sent of the Father, sent as the Messiah, the Anointed One, as Jehovah’s Righteous Servant, to save his people from their sins (John 10:11-18).
Isaiah 42:1-4 (1) Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. (2) He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. (3) A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. (4) He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law.
John 10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
John 10:14-18 (14) I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. (15) As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. (16) And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. (17) Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. (18) No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.
The Son of God came here in human flesh for the purpose of…
· Bringing in Perfect Righteousness!
· Making Atonement for Sin!
· Saving a Covenant People!
4. Having fulfilled all that he was sent here to do, the Son of Man, who is God the Son, arose from the grave, ascended back to the Father, and took his seat upon his throne in heaven, a Prince and a Savior, our King and our Priest (John 17:4-5).
John 17:4-5 (4) I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. (5) And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
John 10:26-33 (26) But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. (27) My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: (28) And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. (29) My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. (30) I and my Father are one. (31) Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him. (32) Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? (33) The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.
Psalm 16:8-11 (8) I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. (9) Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope. (10) For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. (11) Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.
Hebrews 10:11-14 (11) And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: (12) But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; (13) From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. (14) For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
5. This great God-man, our dear Savior, Jesus Christ is coming again in the flesh to make all things new (2 Thessalonians 1:7-12).
2 Thessalonians 1:7-12 (7) And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, (8) In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: (9) Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; (10) When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day. (11) Wherefore also we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power: (12) That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, listen carefully to what God the Spirit declares in our text. Hear what God says. No matter what a person may say and believe about Jesus Christ, if he denies and confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh, “This is a deceiver and an antichrist” (v. 7).
To deny that Christ is come in the flesh is not…
· To say Jesus is not God.
· To deny that Jesus is a Good Man.
· To deny that He was Crucified.
· To deny that He was Raised from the Dead.
To deny that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is to deny that he actually accomplished all that he came here to accomplish. It is to deny that he…
· Fulfilled the Law!
· Brought in Everlasting Righteousness!
· Put Away Sin!
· Redeemed His People!
Hebrews 1:1-3 (1) God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, (2) Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; (3) Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.
Look to Yourselves
Read verse 8.
2 John 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.
Beware of these false preachers and ever cling to Christ alone in whom we have a sure and full reward. Christ is our Savior; and Christ is our Reward! Hear John’s doctrine. —— Look after your own soul, lest you be deceived by any. Rip away every thought that would put you on the footing of your own will, your own works, or your own righteousness; and trust Christ alone as your Wisdom, Righteousness, Sanctification, and Redemption, glorying only in him (1 Corinthians 1:30-31; Philippians 3:3).
Genesis 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.
Colossians 3:24 Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.
My subject is essential doctrine. Look at verses 9-11 and understand that this is truly essential doctrine.
2 John 1:9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
The word “transgresseth” means “violates or runs contrary to the command.” Those who deny the doctrine of Christ run contrary to the whole revelation of God in Holy Scripture. Therefore John tells is that if anyone does not abide in the doctrine of Christ he “hath not God.” — Oh, how serious this matter is! — “Hath not God!”
· Hath not the Knowledge of God.
· Hath not God for His Father (1 John 2:23).
1 John 2:23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.
The doctrine of Christ is specifically the doctrine of our Savior’s redemptive accomplishments (Isaiah 53:1-12; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; Galatians 3:13-14).
Isaiah 53:1-12 (1) Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? (2) For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. (3) He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
(4) Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. (5) But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. (6) All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. (7) He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. (8) He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. (9) And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.
(10) Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. (11) He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. (12) Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
2 Corinthians 5:17-21 (17) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (18) And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; (19) To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. (20) Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. (21) For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
Galatians 3:13-14 (13) Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: (14) That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
But, read on. —— “He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son” (v. 9). —— What a sweet, blessed word from God this is! Abiding in the doctrine of Christ, that is to say, trusting Christ alone as our only and all-sufficient Savior, we live in union with the living God (John 17:20-26).
John 17:20-26 (20) Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; (21) That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. (22) And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: (23) I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. (24) Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. (25) O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. (26) And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
It used to be customary to quarantine houses where there were people with a dangerous disease. That is what John tells us to do with all these deceivers, these antichrists (vv. 10-11).
2 John 1:10-11 (10) If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: (11) For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
· They are anti-Christ!
· They are anti-God!
· They are anti-Grace!
· They seek to destroy you and your children!
· Quarantine them!
The doctrine of Christ, the doctrine of the gospel, is essential doctrine. See that you believe it.
2 Timothy 1:9-10 (9) Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, (10) But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.
“All hail the power of Jesus’ name,
Let angels prostrate fall;
Bring forth the royal diadem,
And crown Him Lord of all!
Ye chosen seed of Israel’s race,
Ye ransomed from the fall,
Hail Him Who saves you by His grace,
And crown Him Lord of all!
Sinners, whose love can ne’er forget
The wormwood and the gall,
Go spread your praises at His feet,
And crown Him Lord of all!