The Contradictions of the Commandment to Love

Text: 2 John 1-13

Reflection and Question: On the one hand, the Elder rooted in the Johannine circle of teaching characteristically commends loving one another to the churches receiving this letter. On the other hand, he warns against those who do not abide in Christ, instructing his readers to refuse to welcome them. Can that judgment and shunning really be a way to live out the commandment to love one another? The writer’s solution seems to rest in walking by Jesus’ commandments which, of course, set above all others include loving others as one’s self. How do you resolve the paradox embedded in this letter?

Prayer: Jesus, Teacher of all Truth, we seek to find our way in this world where there are evil deeds and deceivers who would lead us astray. Shine Your light in our hearts and minds that we may know how to love as You would have us love. Amen.

This meditation is based on the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).