Text: 2 John 4-12
Presence: Fullness of Joy (Full Sermon Manuscript)
The letter was written by Apostle John; wherein during that time, was the only living apostle. It was written for a specific church in Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey). There are two things that the letter emphasizes: first, he was commending them about their walk with God—or Christian living; second, he was warning them about the false teachers. These false teachers were teaching that Christ is just a special prophet and not divine.
The concept of the Fullness of Joy was also stated in 2 John 12 “I have much to write to you, but I do not want to use paper and ink. Instead, I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete.” Ever since the Early Church, there were already practicing a hybrid style of ministering to churches. However, it does not suffice the biblical idea of complete joy or the fullness of joy. Presence is vital in church life; a Hybrid setting is ought to be supplemental not an alternative nor a substitute for corporate worship.
Ministry of Presence
Jesus Christ embodies this promise of eternal presence. His name, “Immanuel” means God With Us. And through the Holy Spirit, Christ’s presence is being continued as God indwells in our hearts. Just the thought of knowing that someone is there for you, present, willing to listen, and sojourn on the road of life brings complete joy to our hearts. This is the same thought of the ministry of presence. Just being “present” is already a ministry.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer reflected on his time during the holocaust; he wrote, “He who loves his dream of a community more than the Christian community itself becomes a destroyer of the latter, even though his personal intentions may be ever so honest and earnest and sacrificial.” Both Apostle John and Bonhoeffer were trying to say that ‘You don’t get the church you want, but you get the church you need.’
Albert Mohler notes, “No believer can do this alone. Faithfulness is always wrought in the community of the church, a family committed to the gospel, to one another, and to walking in the truth together. The community of Christ is a rich means of persevering grace.
Ptr. John Paul Arceno
UCBC New Jersey
March 27, 2022
This section is an excerpt only; download the full manuscript here.