Good evening and welcome to eBible Fellowship’s Bible study in the Book of 2nd John. Tonight is study number 16, and we have been discussing doctrine, because we have come to this verse in our study in 2 John 1:9, which says:
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.
We have seen that doctrine is extremely important. It is not something that we can choose to ignore, and we do not have to get involved with, as some would indicate. That is actually an impossibility for the true believer, considering that the Bible says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,…” The whole Bible has been given to us by God, and one of the purposes He has given it for is to develop teachings from the Word of God.
It says in the Book of Titus in chapter 1, as the LORD gave some instructions to bishops or elders, beginning in Titus 1:7-9:
For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre; But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate; Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.
It is not dramatic sermons that touch the emotions of man, that convince the gainsayer, that leads someone to salvation, but it is rather the straight forward and simple teachings of the Word of God. When they are rightly divided, and much diligence and care has been put into arriving at the sound Biblical conclusions, this sound doctrine is what God uses to exhort and convince the gainsayer. It is a hearing of the Bible’s true teachings, that is able to draw a man or a woman, closer to the LORD.
This is what the Bible says about doctrine, and believers are to hold to it, steadfastly. But, God also tells us that there will be doctrines of men. In Matthew 15, and we have discussed this a little bit, but let us just look at the verses to support the things that have been said, beginning in Matthew 15:4-9, it says:
For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death. But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition. Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying, This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
Here, we see God is not honored, and it is not only a sad thing, but a tragic thing, that the churches and congregations of our day, have altered and perverted and twisted and turned the teachings of the Bible, to the point that they are teachings of men. They are the doctrines of men, and not the doctrines of God.
The churches and congregations expect their members to follow their doctrines, and to turn aside from the true doctrines of the Bible. They would encourage their people to vainly worship God, even though, it leads to destruction, and to just a failure of what they propose to present to people, which is to lead them into the Kingdom of Heaven. They fail to do this completely, and rather, are leading them into hell, destruction and the grave and to death.
And so, yes, we need to hold onto doctrine, but it has to be sound doctrine and not the doctrines of men, and in our day, that is not a very easy thing to do, because false doctrine is everywhere. We read in 2 Timothy 4:1-4:
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
The true believer knows that the time has already come, that what 2 Timothy 4, verse 3 is speaking of, has already come to pass. We are living in that day when the churches and congregations turned their ears away, and they refused to hearken, and would not obey the teaching of the Word of God on numerous points. Concerning the end of the church age, they would not disband and they would not believe that the LORD had brought judgment upon them. Concerning Judgment Day itself, they refused to listen, and refused to properly consider the Bible’s teaching that God was opening up concerning the day of judgment taking place on May 21, 2011, and so on.
Rather, “they heap to themselves teachers,” and by that language, we know that it is referring to just multitudes and untold numbers of teachers, having itching ears.
And, what do teachers teach? They teach from the Bible, doctrine. They teach other kinds of doctrine, a doctrine of a church that will never come to an end, that God would never judge His church. What about the Book of Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel? What about 1 Peter 4:17 that says, “judgment must begin at the house of God.” What about Matthew 24, and the abomination of desolation in the Holy Place? And, 2 Thessalonians 2 statement, that the man of sin will take his seat in the temple? What about Matthew 24’s insistence, that there will come many Christs and false gospels at the time of the end? And on and on it goes, that the Bible points out and emphasizes and re-emphasizes over and over. When we went through the study of the Book of Jeremiah, it was verse after verse, God was hammering home the teaching that the church age is over, and that the rebellious people were finally being judged for their rebelliousness.
What of these things? It does not fit the verse that they find in Matthew, that says that the gates of hell will not prevail against her, that they completely misread and misunderstand that the church in view there is the eternal church comprised of the whole body of believers, the company of the elect, and has nothing to do with the corporate church and the various denominations.
They have cast off the truth for their own particular doctrines that satisfy their itching ears and that flatter their minds, that flatter them. The leaders of the churches teach these things and the people love to have it so. This is the nature of the professed Christians of the world of our day, because God has given them up to a strong delusion, to think that they are His people, when they are far from it.
Let us turn to Revelation 2, and this will be the last verse we look at before we move on, in our study of 2nd John. It says in Revelation 2:14:
But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam,…
This is one of the LORD’S addresses to the churches, as He addressed seven churches in Revelation chapter 2 and chapter 3. He is indicating that in one church, they are holding the doctrine of Balaam.
…who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.
Here, we see that God is reverting back. He is going all the way back to Balaam, in the Book of Numbers, and that had to do with the nation of Israel, and we really cannot see how it had anything to do with the church, until we realize that God uses Old Testament Israel as a type and a figure of the New Testament Church. And that is why He is referring to Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, and in this congregation they have them there that hold the doctrine of Baalam, that is, they are false prophets. They do not come to the Bible in the proper way. They do not have the Bible’s own hermeneutic, but they may hold to their seminary’s hermeneutic, their seminary’s way of studying the Bible, in order to come to truth.
With their seminary method of Biblical interpretation, they develop doctrines that, for all intents and purposes, on the spiritual level are akin to eating things sacrificed to idols, and committing fornication, or spiritual fornication, because they are not coming from God and from the Word of God, but from the minds of men. They are no better than Balaam’s tactics and the things that he devised out of his own mind, when he was hired by Balac to curse Israel.
As a result of the churches holding onto the teachings of men, with their traditions and their confessions, creeds and their denominational stances, they have developed a set of doctrines that are just like Balaam, in the sense that they have brought a curse upon themselves and upon their own people. They are under the wrath and judgment of God. What a horrible thing it is. What a tragic thing it is, that this has come upon the churches of the New Testament.
Let us go to our Book of 2nd John, and we will move on to 2 John 1:10, where it says:
If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:
So, we are continuing to discuss doctrine. God is continuing to focus on doctrine, and we know, that He is referring to the doctrine of Christ, the Bible and the Bible’s teachings. So, if any come unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed.
Let us first look at this idea of “into your house,” as it says in the Gospel of Luke in chapter 10, at the time when the LORD was sending out the 70, two by two, and it says in Luke 10:1-7:
After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come. Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves. Carry neither purse, nor scrip, nor shoes: and salute no man by the way. And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house. And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it: if not, it shall turn to you again. And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house.
We see that Jesus, in sending forth the 70, He was sending them into individual houses. The Gospel is a very personal thing. Yes, it is sent far and wide and broadcast over airwaves in our day, and indiscriminately, it falls upon nations and cities. Yet, very personally, God takes that Word into the nooks and crannies of the countries and states and cities and towns and villages, and He takes it into the houses of individuals, into the houses of people.
And so, especially in that day, the believers (disciples) carrying the message of the Lord Jesus Christ would be invited over for dinner, and they would enter into the house of an individual, and since they were bringing the true gospel, they had a message of peace from the Son of Man, and their peace would rest upon certain houses, as God would grant this one or that one, His salvation. And others would refuse, and that peace would return to them, in a sense, and they would continue on their way.
God tells us in 2 John 1:10, and He says:
If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:
That is, we are not to invite this person, or people, into our home, in the same way we would invite the true Gospel into our home. The people holding the doctrine of Christ would be welcome. God would have us to welcome them into our house and, not only in person.
In our day we have to enlarge this understanding a bit to include radio and television and internet and mail. We do not want in our home, a radio station that is teaching things contrary to the doctrine of Christ. We turn it off, and we do not listen to it. We do not want a television program that is teaching things contrary to the doctrine of Christ.
We should never turn on a program, knowing that it is false, but out of some perverse sense of wanting to see people fall over backwards or speak in tongues or be miraculously healed, when we know none of that is going on truly, and none of it is truly of God, but just out of really, a sinful curiosity, we turn on a program to watch something like that, this verse would prohibit it. We should not bring it into our home—not on radio, not on T.V. and not on internet. We should not be visiting sites that are false and that bring other kinds of doctrines. We do not welcome them nor receive them into our home.
If we get mail, and sometimes we do and we cannot help that, and it comes from a source that is another doctrine, another gospel, we tear it up and throw it into the trash. This is what God would have us to do, to any that come with another Christ, another doctrine, another gospel.
Some, we are very familiar with, and some come to our door, like the Jehovah’s witnesses, and they do not believe that Jesus is God. Should we have a discussion with them in our house? Absolutely not. Should we even discuss things with them at the door? No; We would not want our neighbors to think that we had any interest in whatever they are saying.
We might be there, telling them the truth and saying, “look, Jesus is God, and you are not teaching correctly on this point,” and we talk to them for 20 minutes and at the end of 20 minutes, those Jehovah’s witnesses are not going to be convinced at all. And yet, there could have been a neighbor who saw us speaking to them for 20 minutes, and had absolutely no idea what we were talking about, and just knows that we involve ourselves in religious things, and we are giving the Jehovah’s witnesses some times, “hey, maybe the Jehovah’s witnesses have something.” And that could spark an interest in that person. In other words, it could be an appearance of evil to even talk with them, at our door, for any length of time.
So the best thing to do, is when they come to the door, is say, “No, thank you. The Bible tells me I am not to talk with you,” and close the door immediately. We do not slam the door in their faces. We do not have to do this rudely. We do it very matter of factly. “No, thank you. I have no interest. Goodbye,” and we gently close the door. We do not receive them into our home, in any way.
We do not receive gospels that deny that Sunday is the Sabbath. We do not receive gospels, that believe that there are other books beside the Bible. We do not receive any other doctrine than the doctrine of the Lord Jesus Christ.
In this day, at this point, if any missionary comes from any church, we would not receive them, because they would be on par, on the same level as, Jehovah’s witnesses or Seventh Day Adventists or Mormons.
Yes, the Presbyterians, Baptists, Lutherans, Episcopalians and Catholics, and everyone else are all on that level, because they would want to enter our homes, to get us to go to church. And yet, the Bible tells us that the church age is over. We are not to go to church. God gave that command that we are to depart out of the churches, and that command has not been rescinded. We are never to return to church, and therefore, we would not want to receive any denominational church or nondenominational or any kind of a church, for any reason, into our home, for the very same reasons we would not receive these other groups. They are now teaching things contrary to the Bible, and we would not welcome them, nor bid them Godspeed, in any way.
When we get together in our next study, we will take a look at this word, “Godspeed.”