If you heard today’s first reading (2 Jn 4-13), you heard almost an entire book of the Bible. 2 John is the second shortest book (with the least amount of verses — thirteen; 3 John has two more verses but the least number of words) in Scripture. Yet what a powerful message can be packed into just a few words of the Word.
We hear much these days about progressivism. But what is true progress? The answer comes a few verses before the headline:
I ask you,
not as though I were writing a new commandment
but the one we have had from the beginning:
let us love one another.
For this is love, that we walk according to his commandments;
this is the commandment, as you heard from the beginning,
in which you should walk. (vv. 6-7)
There is no legitimate moving forward without authentic love as modeled by Christ. Committing abortion is not loving or progressive. Redefining marriage is not loving or progressive. Eliminating God from the public square is not loving or progressive. Violent protesting is not loving or progressive.
Without a return to Gospel values, without “remain[ing] in the teaching of the Christ” we only see regression. John the Evangelist, in this letter, shows us a better way for ourselves (conversion starts here) and for our nation.