The following are my notes for a bible study I am currently teaching through 2 John.
I have three goals for this bible study:
(1) I want us to study in great depth just a few verses of 2 John.
(2) I want us to learn basic bible study principles so that you can learn how to study on your own and how to teach others how to study God’s word.
(3) I want us to spend some time prayerfully meditating on these truths from 2 John.
A Couple Questions Before We Begin
Can you think of any benefits of studying the bible with this kind of depth and specificity? Are their dangers of studying the bible this way?
In sum, we want to try and exhaust and squeeze all that we can out of these verses, but without losing the context. Continue reading
The following paragraph comes from Thomas Brooks’ book “Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices.”
Remedy (4) Seriously consider that even those very sins that Satan paints, and puts new names and colors upon, cost the best blood, the noblest blood, the life-blood, the heart-blood of the Lord Jesus.
That Christ should come from the eternal bosom of his Father to a region of sorrow and death.
That God should be manifested in the flesh, the creator made a creature.
That he that was clothed with glory should be wrapped with rags of flesh.
He that filled heaven and earth with his glory should be cradled in a manger.
That the power of God should fly from weak man, the God of Israel into Egypt. Continue reading
Notice in the teachings of Jesus the connection between Christian obedience and our hope in heaven:
“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven.” (Matthew 5:11, 12)
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.” (Matthew 6:19, 20)
Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” (Matthew 19:21)
Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. (Matthew 19:28, 29) Continue reading
“This water of life is called a river, to intimate to you by what store of the same it is supplied.
All rivers have the sea for their original: “All the rivers run into the sea, yet the sea is not full;
unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again” (Eccl 1:7).
And so this river of water of life is said to proceed out of the throne, as out of a place where it breaketh out, but the original is the sea, the ocean of grace, which is an infinite Deity. “Thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea, into the depth of the sea of thy grace” (Micah 7:19).
Rivers, when they are broken up, do with their gliding streams carry away a great deal of the filth,
which from all parts of the countries through which they run, is conveyed into them; and they carry it away into the sea, where it is everlastingly swallowed up. And, O! the filth that is cast into this river of God! and, O! how many dirty sinners are washed white therein, for by it’s continual gliding away, it carrieth that filth into the midst of the sea.”
John Bunyan, “The Water of Life.” Reflections on Revelation 22:1 “And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.”
One of the most basic things that the gospel does is change prayer from mere petition to fellowship and the praise of his glory. Galatians 4:6-7 teaches us that when we believe the gospel, we not only become God’s children legally, but we receive the Spirit in order to experience our sonship. The Spirit leads us to call out passionately to God as our tender and loving Father. The Spirit calls out ‘Abba’ (4:7). In the very next verse Paul refers to this experience as “knowing God” (4:8). We do not just know and believe that God is holy and loving, but we actually experience contact with his holiness and his love in personal communion with him.
No one had a deeper insight into the gospel and prayer than Jonathan Edwards. Edwards concluded the most essential difference between a Christian and a moralist is that a Christian obeys God out of the sheer delight in who he is. The gospel means that we are not obeying God to get anything but to give him pleasure because we see his worth and beauty. Therefore, the Christian is able to draw power out of contemplation of God. Without the gospel, this is impossible. We can only come and ask for things- petition. Without the gospel, we may conceive of a holy God who is intimidating and who can be approached with petitions if we are very good. Or we may conceive of a God who is mainly loving and regards all positively. To approach the first “God” is fearsome; to approach the second is no big deal. Thus without the gospel, there is no possibility of passion and delight to praise and approach God. Continue reading