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Modern scholarship has complicated the issue even further with most New Testament scholars rejecting the identity of the beloved disciple as the apostle John and conjecturing as many as five different author or redactors for the gospel and letters. Jesus is pure--the same inside and out. "We then as workers together with him," 2 Corinthians 6:1. 1 John, 2 John, 3 John reminds believers to show God's light and love as they stay true to their beliefs. The expression here, (ἔχειν κοινωνίαν) is stronger, since it expresses the enjoyment or realization of fellowship, as compared with the mere fact of fellowship. 3 John 1:2 KJV. Retail: $44.99. The New Testament letters are different from these narrative accounts of the life of Jesus because each letter addressed pressing issues of the moment rather than recounting events from a previous time period. Even as thy soul prospereth - John had learned, it would seem, from the "brethren" who had come to him, 3 John 1:3, that Gaius was living as became a Christian; that he was advancing in the knowledge of the truth, and was exemplary in the duties of the Christian life; and he prays that in all other respects he might be prospered as much as he was in that. He doesn't command Christians to "feel … The author of this epistle never identified himself by name, but Christians since the beginning of the church have considered this letter authoritative, believing it was written by Irenaeus (AD 175–195), bishop of Lyon, was born in Asia Minor and as a child personally knew Polycarp, who is said to have been appointed bishop of Smyrna by eyewitnesses of the Lord Jesus. that ye also may have fellowship with us—that ye also who have not seen, may have the fellowship with us which we who have seen enjoy; what that fellowship consists in he proceeds to state, "Our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son." The Gospels telling that story were written some decades later and so are concerned, first, with the events of Jesus’ lifetime recorded but, second, with what was happening in the churches to which each gospel was addressed and which shaped their content. King James Version (KJV) Public Domain . 1 John 3:2. "That we might be fellow-helpers to the truth," 3 John 1:8. 1 John 3:4. But it is not only John teaching this. Of this all true Christians are sensible, and this constitutes no small part of their special joy. 2 John 1. There was a union in feeling, and affection, and desire, and plan, and this was to him a source of joy. But ever since the fourth century when Eusebius wrote, there has been debate in the church about the authorship of the three letters attributed in the New Testament to John. The fellowship which Christians have with God relates to the following points: (1) Attachment to the same truths, and the same objects; love for the same principles, and the same beings. For a full view of the subject, see the author's notes, with the supplementary note at Romans 8:10.). As usual, context is key in understanding the meaning of Scripture. Without this union there can be no communion. John’s letters reflect the second and third issues: heresy and a crisis of leadership. But there is also a large sphere in which he admits us graciously to a cooperation with him, and in which, unless we work, his agency will not be put forth. John 1:1 – Meaning and Translation. For an in-depth, verse-by-verse study of 1, 2, and 3 John, see Karen H. Jobes’ newly-released video lecture series. John 1:2 Context. To "have fellowship," means to have anything in common with others; to partake of it; to share it with them, (see the notes at Acts 2:42); and the idea here is, that the apostle wished that they might share with him all the peace and happiness which resulted from the fact that the Son of God had appeared in human form in behalf of men. 1. To stop with this verse will create deep misunderstanding. Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. [⇑ See verse text ⇑] The role of God as Creator is established in verse 3. This is a normal kind of greeting at the end of a letter. This post has been adapted from Karen H. Jobes’ commentary on 1, 2, & 3 John in the Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. 3 John 2 in all English translations. The happiness of God is found in holiness, truth, purity, justice, mercy, benevolence. All books of the New Testament refer to events that happened in the first century, such as the life of Jesus, the spread of the gospel, and issues that arose in the infant churches. John writes: 5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him is no darkness at all. The Hebrew word describing these sins, pesha' (Strong's #6588), is translated as "transgress," "transgressions," "transgressors," or "transgressed" many times. One existing from all eternity and intimately known to himself: in 1 John 1:3 he is thinking mainly of why he declares this, viz. The fellowship with both contemplates both as united in the Godhead. The First Epistle of John, often referred to as First John and written 1 John or I John, is the first of the Johannine epistles of the New Testament, and the fourth of the catholic epistles.There is no scholarly consensus as to the authorship of the Johannine works.The author of the First Epistle is termed John the Evangelist, who most scholars believe is not the same as John the Apostle. It is we that are described; we that are pointed out. That ye may have fellowship with us - With us the apostles; with us who actually saw him, and conversed with him. The New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures is published by Jehovah’s Witnesses. We know God only by having fellowship with Him; He may thus be known, but not comprehended. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Explaining John 9:1-3. The repetition of "with" before the "Son," distinguishes the persons, while the fellowship or communion with both Father and Son, implies their unity. Change Language {{#items}} {{local_title}} The New Testament as a whole is focused on one person who lived in the early third of the first century, Jesus of Nazareth, and the significance of his life, death, and resurrection. Christianity is not just knowing about God or knowing certain doctrines or following certain moral precepts. The earliest ascription of authorship to John comes from Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna (d. AD 156), and from Papias, a contemporary of Polycarp, whose writings survive only as quotations in the later writings of Irenaeus and Eusebius. Watch our overview video on the letters of John, which breaks down the literary design of the book and its flow of thought. Author: The Book of 3 John does not directly name its author. Innovation in Christian belief and practice had to be bounded by apostolic orthodoxy. 4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men. The authors of the letters are addressing real questions, issues, and circumstances that are pressing at that moment of time. But a "union with Christ in these things, i. e., in character and feeling, etc." Neither the text of the gospel nor that of the letters bears John’s name, or any name. and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ: That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, is with the Father and with the Son of Him, Jesus Christ. Irenaeus says that John, the disciple of the Lord who was with Jesus in the upper room, wrote the gospel of John while living in Ephesus (Haer. Copyright © 2020 HarperCollins Publishers. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. With so much going on, it’s easy to lose track of what’s been happening. Perhaps John, aware of the Greek ideas, used this term to show them the true meaning of the “logos.” But I think the clear link in John 1 with Genesis 1 primarily roots his meaning of “logos” in the Old Testament (Andreas Kostenberger, John [Baker], … Plato says of one who lives in unrestrained desire and robbery, "Such an one is the friend neither of God nor man, for he is incapable of communion (κοινωνεῖν ἀδύνατος), and he who is incapable of communion (κοινωνία) us also incapable of friendship" ("Gorgias," 507). In the work of creation; in upholding all things; in the government of the universe; in the transmission of light from world to world; in the return of the seasons, the rising and setting of the sun, the storms, the tides, the flight of the comet, we can have no joint agency, no cooperation with him. Since the letter identifies no specific church, location, or individual to whom it was sent, its classification is as a “general epistle”. Jesus said (John 17:3), “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” Christianity at its heart is, knowing God personally through Jesus Christ, who revealed God to us. See on John 10:27. John 1:1-2 is so badly mistranslated one could do an entire treatise explaining it. It’s been a busy few months at MasterLectures. John's last point in this section is that "every one who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure." 3.1.2). John is very consistent that believers need to love one another. The also is variously explained. All Rights Reserved. Author: 1, 2, and 3 John have from earliest times been attributed to the apostle John, who also wrote the Gospel of John. In 1 John 1:8, the grammar indicates John is speaking about occasional acts of sin. Ephesians 5:32; Colossians 1:27. The verb κοινωνέω to come into fellowship, to be made a partner, to be partaker of, occurs 1 Peter 4:13; 2 John 1:11; Hebrews 2:14, etc. So in the moral world. Thus, it is appropriate to consider what was happening in the churches that were the original recipients of John’s gospel, most likely the last gospel to be written. If the elder was John son of Zebedee, he was likely elderly and the last living apostle. In John 1:1 and John 1:2, Jesus is said to be identical to God. Love is also a major theme in 1, 2, and 3 John and is also touched on in Revelation. Jesus’ lifetime, during which no New Testament books were written; a period of great expansion of the gospel throughout the Roman empire (AD 33 – 60); and. (2) The use of this doctrine is this, that all of us being coupled and joined together with Christ by faith, might become the sons of God: in which only consists all true happiness. Faith realizes what we have not seen as spiritually visible; not till by faith we too have seen, do we know all the excellency of the true Solomon. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. By adoption, secretly in God's predestination, and in the covenant of grace; and openly in regeneration, through faith in Christ, and by the testimony of the Spirit: and it doth not yet appear what we shall be; Here, Scripture makes the interesting point that nothing created was created apart from Jesus. declare we unto you; in the ministry of the word; the person and offices of Christ being the sum and substance of the Gospel ministration, that declares him to be the true God and eternal life, God over all, blessed for ever; and truly man, made of a woman, and made under the law; and to be the only Mediator between God and man, to be prophet, priest; and King, and to be the alone Saviour and Redeemer: this declares the greatness and excellency of his salvation, what an able, proper, and suitable Saviour he is; and what precious promises and spiritual blessings are in him, even all grace and eternal glory. ", That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship. False teachers had emerged from the elder’s own church(es), and their beliefs were challenging his apostolic leadership. There he presumably lived for the rest of his long life, on into the reign of Trajan, the Roman emperor who ruled the empire from AD 98 to 117. (4) we have fellowship with God by direct communion with him, in prayer, in meditation, and in the ordinances of religion. The happiness of the Christian is of the same kind that God has; the same kind that angels have; the same kind that he will himself have in heaven - for the joy of heaven is only that which the Christian has now, expanded to the utmost capacity of the soul, and freed from all that now interferes with it, and prolonged to eternity. This cannot, of course, mean that his nature was the same as that of God, or that in all things he shared with God, or that in anything he was equal with God; but it means that he partook, in some respects, of the feelings, the views, the aims, the joys which God has. 1 John 4:1-21—Read the Bible online or download free. 1 John 3:2. See also Matthew 19:28; Revelation 3:21. Both Polycarp and Papias lived in the greater vicinity of Ephesus in western Asia Minor, the location to which the apostle John is said to have fled at about the time when the Romans destroyed the temple in Jerusalem (AD 70), taking Mary the mother of Jesus with him. Bible Language English. to promote mutual fellowship. The elder argues that Christian leadership is essentially conservative, preserving and passing to the next generation the teaching of the apostles whom the Lord himself had chosen. The grammar of 1 John 3:6 indicates that John is speaking of a settled, continued lifestyle of sin. 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