by Roger Thomas

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2 John: Walking in the Truth (26 of 29)
Series: Through the New Testament
Roger Thomas
2 John

Introduction: Some of you will remember the scene from the movie ''A Few Good Men.'' The 1992 film stared Tom Cruise as a rookie military lawyer who has to defend a squad of marines accused of murder. They claimed they were acting on orders. Jack Nicholson plays a tough guy marine officer. One climactic scene has Nicholson on the stand being interrogated by the Cruise character. Cruise is getting nowhere and finally yells, ''I want the truth!'' The Jack Nicholson character shouts back. ''You can't handle the truth!'' [Herbert Agar Leadership, Vol. 17, no. 2.]

2 John is for those who can handle the truth. 2 John, the next book in our on-going series through the Bible. 2 John is of the shortest of the Bible's sixty-six books. Chuck Swindoll calls 2 John one of the ''New Testament postcards.'' Clearly, if Romans or 1 Corinthians is a letter, the one chapter books of Philemon, Jude, 2nd and 3rd John are postcards. It is short and to the point.

The author of the little letter is simply identified as ''the elder.'' However, a quick comparison reveals that the postcard was penned by the same author as 1 John, 3 John, and the Gospel of John. Though none of those, name the author external testimony from early Christian writers and the internal evidence of the Gospel clearly identify John as the writer.

We know a few facts about John:

1. He was the brother of James and the son of Zebedee from Capernaum of Galilee.
2. He was one of the fishermen called by Jesus to become fishers of men.
3. Peter and Andrew worked for his father's fishing business.
4. He was likely the youngest of the disciples, perhaps merely a teenager at the time.
5. Perhaps because of his youth, he was very close to Jesus. John refers to himself in the Gospel of John simply as the ''disciple Jesus loved.''
6. Jesus nicknamed John and his brother James ''sons of thunder'' because of the eag ...

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