The apostle John is really a man for our times. He wrote his three New Testament letters in a bold, direct, even dogmatic mannerâ€”more so perhaps than any other New Testament writer. Although renowned traditionally as the apostle of love (and he was), he was an authoritative, uncompromising teacherâ€”an exclusive-style instructor with a crucial message of truth versus error, which the church much needs to hear in the twenty-first century.This commentary considers Johnâ€™s clear, simple, unambiguous words from his three brief but profound letters. His themes, some of them reiterated more than once, emerge powerfullyâ€”such as the first letterâ€™s stress on doctrinal certainty, moral clarity, and the preeminence of biblical love, along with the second letterâ€™s emphasis on living the truth and the thirdâ€™s on discerning friends and foes in the local church.
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