Two brief letters survived from John’s pen, both believed to have also been written in the last decade of the First Century. Second John, of 13 verses, emphasizes love and obedience unto God, with a warning against the heresy of the Gnostic Sect. What might we also find in it? With the expression ‘the truth,’ I have everywhere given that a #5, as referring to the Gospel, and that was correct, but see, too, how in verses 1 and 2, the expression could also seem to be a direct reference to #4, the Savior, Himself! Verse 2 certainly implies this strongly. ‘The truth’ and ‘the teaching’ as referring to #5, the Gospel can be found with verses 1 and 2, 4, 9 and 10. That ‘the truth’ might well be #4, the Savior is in verse 2. We see #2, sin in verses 7 thru 9 and 11. It should be said that reception of the Gospel and the Savior, as seen here, results in #8, the New Birth of God’s salvation, as we find it expressed in verses 2, 3, and 9, and, as having both the Father and the Son with us and living inside of us! Having God within results in the living of #9, a New Life characterized by love and obedience unto God found in verses 4 thru 6, and 8 thru 11. In the end, we come into #10, the Kingdom with eternal life and reward as we find it in verses 2 and 8. Even though it’s a private letter of 13 verses, we find evidence of no fewer than 6 of The 10 Essential Elements of The Real New Testament Message.
Third John, another private letter to a friend, of 14 verses, has to do with a church leader exercising dictatorial powers, and rejecting true messengers to them from John. John’s favorite expression by this time is ‘the truth’ easily referring to #5, the Gospel, and finding mention in verses 1, 3, 4, 8 and 12. By using the expression ‘the Name’ we find #4, our Savior. John makes mention of one person’s specific #2, sins with verses 9 thru 11. Rather, John encourages his friend to practice #1, righteousness with verse 11. We find John’s commendation of his friend, and mention of #9, New Life practices in verses 5 thru 8, and 11 and 12. And, having 14 verses, there are no fewer than 5 of The 10 Essential Elements of The Real New Testament Message in this very brief letter; and 7 of the 10 between the two letters.
This entire study since May 26, has been about testing a thesis as to whether there was only one New Testament Message, and did it consist of 10 Essential Elements. I first discerned this from the 4 Gospel accounts while studying them from late January thru early March of 2015. As I developed my thesis further, I brought it to the attention of many of my believing peers, none of whom had ever seen it before. I determined to go thru all the New Testament again to test my thesis. Nearly every post since May 26 has been that test. Having only Revelation left to study, all 8 (or 9) New Testament writers adhere to there being only One Message, and there being 10 Essential Elements to it. There is a distinct logic to them, and the order in which they are placed. Know this Message, and you can readily know all the New Testament. It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell