Beloveds: 1 John 4

Dear readers: yes, it’s a blog post from Doug. You may have forgotten you subscribed, but I hope you’ll stick around. In Summary: It’s amazing, really, how much John packs into this chapter as we look at 1 John 4. He opens with the need to test the “spirits,” moves through the spirit of the […]

Because of Love: 1 John 3

In Summary: John continues to emphasize the love of God for the church. Realize that this is John’s primary theme throughout 1 John: the actions of God are driven by His love. Why would this matter to John or the church in that era? It matters because this is ultimate contrast between Christianity and the […]

Attitudes and Actions: 1 John 2

In Summary: John continues his letter by giving his overall purpose in writing the church. He wants them to not sin—simple enough, right? After all, who would want to continue sinning after meeting the grace of Jesus? John’s concern, though, is that his church, his friends, will still sin. Perhaps because they are still new […]

Joyous Doctrines: 1 John 1

In Summary: Now we move forward into the Johannine Epistles. These are the three letters labeled 1 John, 2 John, and 3 John in the Bible. Tradition, including the manuscript evidence available with labels, ascribes the authorship of these letters to John, son of Zebedee and brother of James, one of the Twelve Disciples. There […]

Truth: 2 Corinthians 13

In Summary: Paul is wrapping up his letter to the Corinthians. He has now written them at least twice, and possibly more, but this will end his recorded correspondence with the church at Corinth. He has exhorted the church to stand for what is right in the midst of a culture that had little use […]

Thorns, Visions, Leaders, and Fellowship: 2 Corinthians 12

In Summary: Well, we’ve reached one of the great “weird” chapters of the New Testament. 2 Corinthians 12 sees Paul speak of “a man” who was caught up to the third heaven and saw Paradise and heard “inexpressible words.” And then, Paul speaks of his thorn in the flesh, some unclear “messenger from Satan” that […]

Lights and Deception: 2 Corinthians 11

In Summary: Paul continues to work through the challenges to his leadership in Corinth and the wider Christian world of the time. While the focus of 2 Corinthians 11 is his relationship with the church at Corinth, an Apostle would have been respected, should have been respected, by all of the churches of the time. […]