Years back, people spoke of putting out the ‘welcome mat,’ as a reminder to those who crossed the threshold into their home. How many times have you heard or used the expression, “Welcome here,” in your travels?
In John’s second pastoral letter, which we know as 2 John, he reminds these genuine Christ-followers that there are some who show up at their door who should not be welcomed. Welcoming false teachers and allowing them to use your home as a ‘base’ of operation would lend credence to their deception.
“If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take him into your house or welcome him. Anyone who welcomes him shares in his wicked work.” (2 John v.10-11)
Prayerful, practical, purposeful support is important for ministries to survive. Hudson Taylor wrote, “God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.” Let’s apply his quote as we think through 2 John verses ten and eleven.
God’s work = Acknowledging Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. The doctrine of Christ (Christology) is not an optional ‘extra’ when it comes to one’s statement of faith. As I wrote in an earlier post, the consequences of false doctrine are eternal. Speaking to individuals today, you discover ‘their version of the truth,’ and many do not believe in any absolute truth except their contradictory assertion – “There are no absolutes!”
God’s way = Bringing the message of Jesus Christ to others. We are each called to find ways to communicate our faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. Through personal witness, tracts, acts of service – e.g. a cup of cold water, etc. we may serve in the proclamation of God’s central saving truth about WHO His Son is, WHAT He did, and WHY He came.
God’s support = Individuals, Families, Churches are called to partner with those who give themselves to the spreading of truth. At times I am appalled as to how little of our budgets are invested in spreading the message. At other times I have been greatly encouraged as I’ve experienced sacrificial giving in various contexts.
So let me ask you, how are you investing in the communication of the gospel? What personal, prayerful, practical regular investment are you contributing to the Great Commission left Christ-followers by our Master? We are called to make investments, but be discerning in our giving. Not every ‘religious’ kook needs to be supported–in fact their nonsense needs to be exposed!