Be Careful Who Your Friends Are (2 John 10-11)

2 John 10-11 – If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.

Almost any person’s parents have let them know that we are known by the company we keep. The reputations of those with whom you surround yourself will eventually become your reputation. Their character may even become yours. And these thoughts may very well explain the reasoning behind these verses from the last apostle, John.

John warns the church not to receive, not to welcome, any person who comes to them not bringing the true teaching of the gospel. The church is neither to greet, welcome, or even share a meal with a person who brings false doctrine and false teachings. To do so, john argues, would be paramount to joining and supporting the false teacher in their ministry. Since our purpose is to glorify God, and we accomplish that purpose by spreading the truth about Christ, we must never, under any circumstances, align ourselves with those who preach a false gospel.

John’s warning should ring in our ears today, in this culture of false and forced religious tolerance. Too often people eagerly welcome those whose views are not only a little different, but downright heretical. We fear so much that we will be thought intolerant and unloving that we slide too far to the other side, failing to stand firm for the word of God. We must be careful, because we in no way want to align ourselves with those who preach a false Christ, a false salvation, a false gospel.

Today, take a little inventory of your relationships and associations. Are you greeting and welcoming those who preach a false gospel? Are you offering support to people who actually preach falsehoods? Are you, in the name of tolerance, actually accidentally supporting the spread of teaching that you could never biblically support? Rethink your associations, and be sure that you are very careful about what they say about who you are and what you believe. Remember, building relationships for the sake of evangelism is one thing, but allying yourself with false teachers is entirely something else.

Dear Lord, I pray that you will make me aware of any associations or friendships that I have which detract from the teaching of the true gospel. Please do not allow me to compromise the truth in order to simply be thought of as tolerant. Let me not welcome those who do not teach truth, so that I might not take part in their wicked works.