All the Bible, Every Book: 2 John
Now this is love: that we walk according to His commandments…
..just as you heard from the beginning (2 John 6).
The nine General Epistles point to the person and work of the resurrected Christ. They encourage Christians to cling to Him and exhort them to serve Him faithfully because He is the only source of life. Written primarily to persecuted Jewish Christians, the truths apply to every believer from every culture and in every age of church history.
John was with the apostles who were in Jerusalem (Acts 8:14), and Paul calls him one of the pillars of the church (Galatians 2:9). And then, for decades he’s not mentioned. Early Christian tradition tells us he left Jerusalem just before its destruction in A.D. 70 and headquartered in and around Ephesus. In his later years he wrote the Gospel of John and three epistles, probably as he was serving in Ephesus.
John’s first epistle was written to a group of churches in danger of following false teachers. His second letter is addressed to one of those churches (elect lady) and its members (her children) who are actually aiding and encouraging these false teachers.
Wrongly concluding that Christian love demands a tolerance of heresy, these believers were in danger of losing all that they had worked for on earth (disciplemaking ministry) and some of what they hoped for in heaven (eternal rewards).
John wastes no words as he makes his point in this letter sent hastily with First John to warn them, “If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine (the teachings of Christ and the Apostles), do not receive him into your house nor greet him” (v 10).
The message of 2nd John—love is based on truth—is a timeless reminder to every Christian and every church. Truth and love cannot be separated:
2 John: Abide in the truth if you want to love well!
The epistle easily divides into the relationship of truth and love in personal relationships (1-6), and in church relationships (7-13).