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Flashcards in NT: FINAL EXAM Deck (76):

(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Authorship & Audience

*Personal letters from Paul to Timothy/Titus
(rather than to entire congregation)

*Nicknamed the “Pastoral Epistles”

*Written from one pastor/shepherd (=Paul)
to another pastor/shepherd (=Timothy/Titus)
about pastoring/shepherding (=Christian leadership)

(Titus so similar to 1 Tim, don't cover Titus)
*Warnings about fables, genealogies… (Titus 1:14; 3:9)
*Advice to bishops (Titus 1:6-9)
*Warnings against evil people (Titus 1:10-16)
*Council about widows (Titus 2:3-5)


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Paul’s Pastoral Epistles

Timothy - Bishop of Ephesus
“For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state.” (Phil. 2:19)

Titus - Bishop of Crete


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Background of the Epistles

1 Timothy was likely written by Paul from Macedonia to Ephesus, AD 66, after Paul’s 1st Roman imprisonment

Titus was likely written by Paul from Macedonia to Titus in Crete, AD 67-68

2 Timothy was likely written from Paul’s 2nd Roman imprisonment, AD 68

***What the Pastoral Epistles present us with is a close-up look at how the “Apostasy” looked/progressed in the early Church.


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Clear evidence of Apostasy- what Paul means when he battles “genealogy"? Anti-Genealogy?

"Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do."
(1 Tim 1:4)

*Paul is not referring to our modern understanding of Family History and vicarious temple work.

*We are commanded to do Family History for the sake of temple work.

In this case, Paul wrote to Timothy about “fables and endless genealogies” as examples of false ideas that simply “minister questions” and do not edify and as a rebuke to those who sought out their ancestry to prove they were “chosen,” or superior to other people. Paul wrote that “the end of the commandment [the summary or capstone of all doctrine] is charity” (1 Timothy 1:5). The Book of Mormon prophet Mormon similarly taught that “charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever”


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Clear evidence of Apostasy- what Paul means when he battles “science"? Anti-Science?

"O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called"
(1 Tim 6:20)
"Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some." (2 Tim 2:18)

*“oppositions” = disputations
*“science” = translation of the Greek term gnosis, which means knowledge

The term was probably referring specifically to the Gnostic movement that was then finding its way into early Christianity. Gnostics believed that salvation was obtained by being instructed in secret knowledge (called gnosis ). Gnosticism was a major source of controversy in second-century Christianity.

*Paul warns against certain Christians (later called Gnostics) who taught they had correct “knowledge” (gnosis) about the origins of the gods.
*Gnostics speculated about “fables” or “genealogies” of the gods.


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Guidelines for Bishops in 1 Tim 3

"This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil. (1 Tim 3: 1-7)

*We should not seek for office, but…
*Paul’s main point: “If someone desires to serve, it is a good thing.”
*“Bishop” (Greek: episkopos), or bishop, is one who watches over the flock as an overseer or supervisor


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Guidelines for Bishops in 1 Tim 3 [Continued...]

One Wife? (1 Tim. 3:2)
*Not refer to polygamy vs. monogamy.
*“Husband of one wife” = “married to one wife” or “married only once”
*Early Christians viewed divorce and remarriage very negatively
*Bishops should not be unnecessarily divorced and remarried.

No Novice (1 Tim. 3:6)
*“Novice” = recent convert
*New members should not be given leadership positions (except by necessity).
*They may get overwhelmed, or become proud.

Those Without (1 Tim. 3:7)
*“Them which are without” = Those who are outside of the gospel (i.e. non-members)
*This is about ecumenical or interfaith dialogue.
*Bishops should not pick fights with other local religions; cause problems.
*Bishops must get along well with all types of people and religions in the area.


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) The Latter Times

"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;" (1 Tim 4:1)

*NT references to “latter times” (“last days”) often refer to the current time period or immediate future, rather than only 2000 years later.
*Paul and other early Christians felt they were living in the “last days”

“Paul used the term ‘latter times’ to denote the period in which the developments that he foretold would take place. In the ultimate sense, the period of time in which we now live can be called ‘the latter times’ better than any other… Yet Paul spoke using a different definition for ‘latter times.’ His focus was on the last days of the Christianity of his era, the ‘latter times’ of the early church.”


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) 2 Tim probably is the last thing Paul writes

In 2 Timothy, however, Paul alludes to another imprisonment in Rome, which was apparently a separate incident from when he was under house arrest there earlier. In the imprisonment, Paul was in chains, and he was held in a cold cell or dungeon, and his friends struggled to locate him. Luke was apparently his only contact, and Paul expected that his life was coming to an end. According to early Christian traditions, Paul was executed during the persecutions of the Roman Emperor Nero. Since Nero died in a.d. 68, the Second Epistle to Timothy may have been written about a.d. 67 or 68, just prior to Paul’s martyrdom.


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) 2 Tim probably is the last thing Paul writes [Continued...]

"For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. Only Luke is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry."
(2 Tim 4:6-8, 11)

*Paul’s departing testimony.
*Right before Paul’s second trial in Rome.
*Paul does not expect to be acquitted this time.
*Paul is in the covenant, and if he dies, he is ok.
*Notice of Luke & Mark


(1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) Apostasy

Apostasy comes from within and slowly destroys, like acid

"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith."
(2 Tim 3:1-8)


(Hebrews) Authorship & Audience

*Paul is the traditional author of Hebrews.
*However, Hebrews was likely originally anonymous.
*Epistles of Paul are in order by size, except Hebrews.
--Early Christians were not certain who wrote it
--So they placed it at the end of Paul’s letters
*Some early Christians thought Paul wrote Hebrews, while others thought that Barnabas or Luke or Clement or Timothy wrote it.
*Those who thought that Paul wrote it eventually won.
--So they put Paul’s name in the title
*General conclusion: Hebrews probably is being written for Jewish Christians at Rome.

General Problem:
*Christians slipping into Jewish practices (an old problem!).
General Answer:
*Christ, the Gospel, and the Melchizedek Priesthood are superior (in every way) to Moses, the Law, and the Levitical Priesthood.


(Hebrews) Authorship & Audience [Continued...]

Audience was Jewish (Hebrew) Christians. These converts apparently wrestled with several questions: If we accept that the rituals of the law of Moses are not required of Gentile Christians, what is the true value of the Old Testament? If the gospel of Jesus Christ is the right way, why are we being persecuted so much for being His followers? If Jesus was the Messiah, why is Israel still in bondage to the Romans?
Under the pressure of various afflictions, many of these Jewish Christians were withdrawing from the Church and returning to the relative safety of Jewish worship at the synagogue. One reason that the book of Hebrews was written was to encourage Jewish converts to remain faithful to Jesus Christ and not revert to their former way of life. The book’s structure can be seen as three main sections of teachings that build to a concluding exhortation:
(1) the preeminence of Jesus Christ as the Son of God
(2) the superiority of Christ’s priesthood
(3) the superiority of His atoning sacrifice and ministry


(Hebrews) Jesus vs. Angels

"Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?" (Hebrews 1:4-5)

*Jesus is better than angels. How/why?
“Name” = identity
*Christ has more excellent name/identity than angels.
*God identified Christ as a “Son”
*But what are angels?
*Angels are “ministering spirits sent to minister” (i.e. “servants sent to serve”)
*Conclusion: Christ’s identity as God’s Son is superior to angels’ identity as God’s servants.


(Hebrews) Jesus vs. Angels [Continued...]

"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings."
(Hebrews 2:9-10)

Lower than the Angels?
*Jesus became a little lower than the angels = Jesus condescended to come to earth as a lowly human being. (Mortals, Angels, and then Jesus Christ)
*Jesus, the “captain of our salvation”, was made perfect through suffering.
*Something about suffering was essential for Jesus [“he that sanctifies”] and is essential for us [“they who are sanctified”]?


(Hebrews) Jesus vs. Angels [Continued...]

(purpose of Christ's suffering)
Ans: Heb 4: 15-16
-because he can feel what we feel, he can succor us, and help up, approach God boldly because he knows how we felt, became us, can meet us and has tied himself up in those moment, broken the chains if we turn to him, christ meets us wherever we need him

*Suffering / temptation allowed Christ to learn perfectly how to be merciful to others.
*If Christ was “without sin”, how does he really know what it is like to be you and me?
*Answer: In Gethsemane, Jesus vicariously experienced what it was like to be guilty!

*Jesus became like us “in all things.”
*Not only does he know what it feels like to be tempted…but to give in to temptation.
*Thus he is able to give us mercy


(Hebrews) Jesus vs. High Priest

"For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need."
(Hebrews 4:15-16)

*“Throne of grace” = top of ark of the covenant (“mercy seat”) where high priest sprinkled blood, symbolizing God’s presence and merciful atonement.
*Because Jesus knows what it is like to be us, we can boldly approach him for mercy and forgiveness.


(Hebrews) Jesus vs. Moses

*Jesus is greater than Moses.
*How or why?
*Just as angels, Moses was God’s servant, but Christ is God’s Son

For the Jews, Moses was the most highly revered prophet, the one who received God’s law at Sinai. The Jewish Christians being addressed in Hebrews were contemplating abandoning their faith in Christ and returning to Judaism in an attempt to remain loyal to the law of Moses. They did not understand (or believe deeply enough) that Christ was preeminent to Moses. Having shown in Hebrews 1–2 that Jesus Christ is greater than the angels, Paul next explained that as “the Apostle and High Priest of our profession,” Jesus is greater than Moses.


(Hebrews) Identity of Melchizedek - Who was Melchizedek, and how was he related to Abraham?

"But he whose descent is not counted from them received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him that had the promises."
(Hebrews 7:6)

* “he” = Melchizedek
* “them” = Abraham & Levi
*Melch. was a contemporary of Abr.
*Melchizedek was not related to Abraham and his descendants.
*Melch. was a Gentile high priest.

*Melchizedek blessed Abraham and received tithes from Abraham.
*Melchizedek is greater than Abraham, since the greater person is the one who blesses and receives tithes from the lesser person.


(Hebrews) Melchizedek Priesthood

*Christ was also a high priest. (Not a Levitical high priest, but a Melchizedek high priest).
*Jesus was from the tribe of Judah — not the tribe of Levi (and Moses said nothing about the tribe of Judah having priesthood).
*So Jesus could not have been a Levitical high priest. He was a Melchizedek high priest.
*If the Levitical Priesthood could bring salvation, there would be no need for another priesthood.
*Conclusion: The Melchizedek Priesthood is greater than the Levitical Priesthood.


(Hebrews) Jesus sheds his blood in the Holy of Holies as the sacrifice and the sacrificer

The ordinances performed by ancient Levitical priests foreshadowed the Atonement made by the Son of God. Ancient priests offered up goats or lambs from Israel’s flocks; the Lamb of God voluntarily offered up Himself. The high priest offered sacrifices in this manner every year on the Day of Atonement; Christ offered His sacrifice “once for all”. As the ancient high priest entered into the Holy of Holies on earth and sprinkled the goat’s blood upon the mercy seat for the sins of Israel, so Jesus Christ our Mediator entered the sanctuary of heaven itself, there to intercede by virtue of His own spilt blood before the Father in behalf of those who would repent. Thus, Jesus was not only the High Priest for us in making the offering; He was also the very offering Himself. Jesus came “to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself”


(Hebrews) Divine Ascent on Day of Atonement/Scapegoat

Day of Atonement:
1) High Priest, clothed in white, offered bullock as sin offering for himself; offered one goat as sin offering for Israel; Entered the Holy of Holies to sprinkle their blood on the mercy seat. (Symbolism of Holy of Holies, Mercy Seat, & sprinkling of blood?)
2) The 2nd goat (Azazel) had the sins of Israel placed upon it and was driven into the wilderness (symbolism? SCAPEGOAT)
3) As the high priest entered into the Holy of Holies, the congregation lifted their hands and prayed (symbolism of prayer & veil?)

*Under Law of Moses, only high priest (not people in general) allowed to enter Holy of Holies (or the presence of God).
*This symbolized that God not yet revealed way for everyone to enter presence of God.
*Only through Gospel of Christ can everyone enter presence of God.
*Christ offered himself only once, and it worked permanently!
*Christ didn’t need to repeat his sacrifice every year like Levitical high priests.


(Hebrews) Major elements of Holy Place and in the temple

“For there was a tabernacle made; the first [room], wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary…which had the golden censer."
(Heb. 9:2,4)

“First [room]” = the Holy Place
“The candlestick” = the Menorah
“The table and the shewbread” = the table of showbread (or “bread of the presence” of the Lord)
“The golden censer” = the altar of incense (Heb. 9:4 places the altar of incense in the Holy of Holies, but it really was in the Holy Place.)


(Hebrews) Major elements of Holy of Holies in the temple

“And after the second veil, [in] the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all; which had…the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables [i.e. “tablets] of the covenant. And over it the cherubim of glory shadowing the mercy seat.” (Heb. 9:3-5)

“Holiest of all” = Holy of Holies (*The Holy of Holies symbolized the presence of God.)
Ark of the Covenant
(ABSENT from the Temple of Herod)
Inside the ark: pot of manna, Aaron’s rod, & tablets of 10 commandments


(1 & 2 Peter) Authorship & Audience

These are both general (catholic) epistles, written by Peter 60-68 A.D.
Not intended for one specific church.
Paul’s letters showed the internal strife affecting the church. First Peter shows how external persecution should be handled.


(1 & 2 Peter) Authorship & Audience [Continued...]

1 Peter was probably written from Rome, before the Neronian persecutions, probably AD 62-63, to Saints in the five provinces of Asia Minor (1 Peter 1:1). It was written to forewarn church members of a “fiery trial” yet to come, and teaching them how to react to suffering & persecution. It was a warning & preparation for ominous days ahead.

2 Peter was probably written from Rome, prior to AD 68. It appears to follow the Neronian persecutions (no mention of persecution or suffering) but precedes Peter’s martyrdom in AD 68. The purpose is to teach how to come to a knowledge of Christ. It also warns of impending apostasy & reminds saints to stick to apostolic teachings. Danger is more from within than from without at this point.


(1 & 2 Peter) “Babylon”

*Ancient Babylon = modern Iraq.
*Christians used “babylon” as metaphor for evil, rather than land of modern Iraq.
*Because Romans persecuted Christians, they referred to Rome by code-name: Babylon.
*Thus “the church at Babylon” is the church at Rome.
*Peter is in Rome, with Silvanus and Marcus (traditionally the John Mark of Acts 16).


(1 & 2 Peter) Christians & Persecution

3 things about Christians were a concern for Gentiles:
1. Pax Deorum (The Peace of the Gods)
2. Cannibalism
3. Immorality


(1 & 2 Peter) Christians & Persecution Background [Continued...]

*Roman Attitudes:
1) If you honor the gods, they will protect Empire from danger (war, famine, etc.).
2) Burn incense to honor Emperor (who represents the gods and protects Empire).
*Christian Attitudes:
1) Renounce Roman gods. They don’t really exist.
2) Refuse to burn incense. Should not worship Emperor; he is only a man

*Roman/Gentile response to Christians:
1) Christians make the gods angry. If bad things happens, we blame Christians.
2) Christians are dangerous: disloyal (& encourage disloyalty) to emperor/gov’t.
**Christians felt these were issues of private religious worship.
**But Romans felt these were issues of public social stability & political disloyalty.

*Both Christians & Jews refused to burn incense to Emperor!
**Romans respected / tolerated ancient religious traditions.
*At this point, Romans realizing Christianity is separate from Judaism.
**Romans tolerated Jews, because Judaism was ancient. (& Jews offered sacrifice in behalf of emperor each day at temple)
**Romans did not tolerate Christianity, because it was perceived as new!


(1 & 2 Peter) How to handle trials

Peter knew that Church members were facing ridicule for their beliefs; however, he wrote that trials of faith are “more precious than . . . gold”. Like gold, our faith in Jesus Christ is refined when we faithfully endure fiery trials. Jesus is our Exemplar in all things— His crown of thorns came first and then His crown of glory. There is an eternal principle associated with suffering. After affliction and tribulation—which bring sorrow and the need to be long-suffering—come joy, blessings, and exaltation

“How do you remain ‘steadfast and immovable’ during a trial of faith? You immerse yourself in the very things that helped build your core of faith: you exercise faith in Christ, you pray, you ponder the scriptures, you repent, you keep the commandments, and you serve others. “When faced with a trial of faith—whatever you do, you don’t step away from the Church! Distancing yourself from the kingdom of God during a trial of faith is like leaving the safety of a secure storm cellar just as the tornado comes into view”


(1 & 2 Peter) Christ’s preaching to spirits in prison

Peter provided the insight that Jesus “went and preached unto the spirits in prison; some of whom were disobedient in the days of Noah, while the long-suffering of God waited”

The Savior’s preaching to the spirits in prison is an example of God’s fairness and justice. This doctrine of salvation for the dead makes it possible for all mankind to accept the gospel even though they may never have heard it in mortality. The doctrine of salvation for the dead is unique to Latter-day Saints.

Two crucial components for judgment: life you lead and ordinances you receive. Under certain circumstances there can be an extension.
Ultimately, Jesus, the righteous Judge, decides to whom this principle applies.


(1 & 2 Peter) Calling and Election made sure–How does it happen?

Peter exhorted the Saints to “make your calling and election sure”. He promised that those who do so “shall never fall” and will receive “an entrance . . . into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord”. Teaching on this subject, Elder Bruce R. McConkie explained: “To have one’s calling and election made sure is to be sealed up unto eternal life; it is to have the unconditional guarantee of exaltation in the highest heaven of the celestial world; it is to receive the assurance of godhood; it is, in effect, to have the day of judgment advanced, so that an inheritance of all the glory and honor of the Father’s kingdom is assured prior to the day when the faithful actually enter into the divine presence to sit with Christ in his throne, even as he is ‘set down’ with his ‘Father in his throne.’


(1 & 2 Peter) Calling and Election made sure–How does it happen? [Continued...]

The Prophet Joseph Smith further explained: “After a person has faith in Christ, repents of his sins, and is baptized for the remission of his sins and receives the Holy Ghost, (by the laying on of hands), which is the first Comforter, then let him continue to humble himself before God, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and living by every word of God, and the Lord will soon say unto him, Son, thou shalt be exalted. When the Lord has thoroughly proved him, and finds that the man is determined to serve Him at all hazards, then the man will find his calling and his election made sure, then it will be his privilege to receive the other Comforter, which the Lord hath promised the Saints, as is recorded in the testimony of St. John, in the 14th chapter”


(1 & 2 Peter) How does one become a “partaker of the divine nature?”

1) Make your calling and election sure
2) Reading the scriptures
3) Listening to the living prophets


(1 & 2 Peter) Paul is hard to understand

Peter on Paul
“Our beloved brother Paul also, according to the wisdom given unto him, has written unto you. As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.” (2 Pet. 3:15–16)


(James) Authorship & Audience

*This James is traditionally the brother of Jesus
*James never identifies himself as a brother of Jesus.
*Every “James” in the NT is really “Jacob” (Greek: Iacōbos).
*“Peter, James, & John” = “Peter, Jacob, & John”

James is the first of the seven “general Epistles” included in the New Testament—the others being 1 and 2 Peter; 1, 2, and 3 John; and Jude. They are labeled as general Epistles because their authors intended them for a broader audience than a single congregation or area. James addressed his letter “to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad”


(James) Joseph Smith & James

 ”While I was laboring under the extreme difficulties caused by the contests of these parties of religionists, I was one day reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse, which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine. It seemed to enter with great force into every feeling of my heart. I reflected on it again and again. . . “ (JS-H:1:11-12).


(James) Pure Religion

"Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world." (James 1:27)

*”Religion” = worship
(Greek: thrēskeia)
*“Religion” (or “worship”) in its purest form is not sitting in meetings, but rather serving others who are in need.

James observed that caring for others, particularly widows and the fatherless, is a manifestation of “pure religion”. Anciently, widows and orphans were among the most underprivileged members of society and had few rights or opportunities; thus, the Lord repeatedly commanded His people to care for them and for others in great need


(James) What are faith and works in James 2?

"Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works." (James 2:17-18)

*Paul used the example of Abraham to make the opposite point.
*Was Abraham justified by works (James) or by faith (Paul)?

James used the term works in a different manner than Paul, referring to righteous deeds as the natural expression of belief. In response to those who suggested one could have faith “and have not works,” James asked, “Can faith save him?” (James 2:14). The Greek text of this phrase contains an article before faith; James meant, “Can [that kind of] faith save him?” James was not teaching that faith has no saving power; he was teaching that a passive belief that resulted in no action was not true, saving faith. When James challenged his readers to “shew me thy faith without thy works” (James 2:18), he was pointing out that it is not possible to show one’s faith except through one’s actions—true faith cannot exist apart from righteous works.


(Jude) Authorship & Audience

*Jude is traditionally the brother of Jesus
*Jude never identifies himself as the brother of Jesus, but as the brother of James.

Audience: Sanctified Christians
*A sermon in epistolary form.
*Because of the more general Christian audience, it is called a “Catholic Epistle” (“catholic” = universal, general).
*The Catholic Epistles: James, 1-2 Peter, 1-3 John, Jude.

Jude’s stated purpose was to encourage his readers to “earnestly contend for the faith” against ungodly teachers who had entered the Church, promoting immoral behavior and false teachings that denied the Lord Jesus Christ.


(Jude) Apostasy

"For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ."
(Jude 1:4)

General problem:
*False teachers have “crept in”
(i.e into the church).
*Again, note the description of apostasy from within: these false teachers were members of the church.

Jude acknowledged the ongoing apostasy in the ancient Church as he described ungodly men who entered the ranks of the Church without the awareness of the members and then taught false doctrines. Jude compared these rebellious individuals to people in Old Testament times who were destroyed for their disobedience—the Israelites who were led out of Egypt and later failed to forsake their sins, and the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah. Jude also gave the example of the angels in the premortal world who chose to rebel against God and follow Satan. Jude used these examples to put his readers “in remembrance” of what awaits those who rebel against proper authority and fail to repent.


(Jude) Apostasy [Continued...]

*The first generation of Israelites were destroyed in the wilderness.
*Those who rebelled in the pre-mortal life were cast out.
*Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by the Lord.
*Cain was punished for killing Abel.
*Balaam was punished for disobeying the Lord.
*Those who rebelled against Moses were destroyed.


(Jude) non-canonical or extra-biblical scriptures–Is canon closed?

*At this point in early Christianity, the canons of the Old Testament and New Testament were not fixed or CLOSED.
*Jude quoted, as inspired documents, books that were outside of our current biblical canon.
*Jude felt that there were other inspired documents besides just our biblical canon.
*Most Christians today believe that the CANON of scripture is CLOSED, not OPEN. Nothing can be added.
*Jude, however, had an OPEN CANON, not a CLOSED CANON


(1-3 John) The Johannine Epistles

All three epistles reportedly written by the Apostle John, who was also the author of a Gospel and the Book of Revelation.

They are difficult to date
Revelation 60/90 A.D.
Epistles 90-100 A.D.
Gospel 90-100 A.D.

**According to tradition, John wrote his Gospel and the Epistles after the Book of Revelation.
*John’s Gospel is traditionally the last document written in the New Testament (not the Book of Revelation).

2 and 3 John
2 and 3 John both written by “the Elder.”
2 John seems to be a summary of 1 John, emphasizing the humanity of Jesus and the need for love.
Written to the “elect lady” Things only get worse in 3 John
Gaius & Diotrephes


(1 John) Authorship & Audience

1 John -- Authorship:
*The author does not identify himself.
*Traditionally John the Beloved, Apostle, Disciple, Gospel Writer, and Revelator (but not John the Baptist).
*The language of 1-3 John is very similar to the Gospel of John (imagery using love-hate, light-darkness, truth-lies, flesh-spirit, etc.).

1 John -- Audience:
*“My Beloved Little Children” (cf. 1 John 2:1,12,18,28, etc.)
*Probably means John’s converts or his congregation (or since Peter is probably dead, then John could be addressing the church in general).
*Normally grouped with the other “Catholic Epistles.”
*1-3 John are traditionally the last written material in the New Testament (even later than the Book of Revelation).


(1 John) Docetism

Docetism was part of a larger movement known as Gnosticism. A core teaching was that the spirit was wholly good and that the physical body, was wholly evil. Followers of Gnosticism believed that salvation was not achieved by being freed from sin but rather by freeing the spirit from matter, meaning the physical body. They also believed that salvation was achieved through special knowledge (gnosis) rather than through faith in Jesus Christ. Followers of Docetism rejected the idea that He came to earth in actual bodily form. They believed that God was invisible, immortal, all-knowing, and immaterial, and they considered the physical world and the physical body to be base and evil. Therefore, they believed that since Jesus was the divine Son of God, He could not have experienced the limitations of being human. In their view, Jesus Christ was not literally born in the flesh, and He did not inhabit a tangible body, bleed, suffer, die, or rise with a physical resurrected body—He only seemed to do these things. Docetism comes from the Greek dokeo, meaning “to seem” or “to appear.” John refuted these false teachings by bearing witness of the Savior’s physical existence. He declared that Jesus Christ indeed came to earth in the flesh, that His suffering and death made up His redeeming act, and that God sent His Son because of His great love for us.


(1 John) Docetism [Continued...]

*Agreeing with Greek idea that body is evil, some early Christians felt that Jesus (who was good) could not have had a physical body (which is evil).
*This false doctrine is called DOCETISM.
*These Christians (called Docetists) taught that Jesus only “seemed” to come to earth in a body, but really was a phantasm (illusion). (Greek: dokeō = “to seem”)


(1 John) Manifestations of God’s love

“Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” (1 John 4:7-8)

Love is a central theme of John’s First Epistle. Elder Bruce R. McConkie of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles summarized 1 John’s theme of divine love as follows:
“That God is love; “That love is the foundation upon which all personal righteousness rests; “That all the purposes and plans of Deity are based on his infinite and eternal love; and “That if men will personify that love in their lives, they will become like the Lord himself and have eternal life with him”


(1 John) Manifestations of God’s love [Continued...]

Forms of the word love appear more than 20 times in 1 John 4. John taught that “love is of God,” that “God is love,” and that God’s love was manifest in the gift of His Only Begotten Son"

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland similarly expressed that Christ came to demonstrate the great love God has for His children: “Feeding the hungry, healing the sick, rebuking hypocrisy, pleading for faith—this was Christ showing us the way of the Father, He who is ‘merciful and gracious, slow to anger, long-suffering and full of goodness’. In His life and especially in His death, Christ was declaring, ‘This is God’s compassion I am showing you, as well as that of my own.’ . . . “. . . And in the spirit of the holy apostleship, I say as did one who held this office anciently: ‘Herein [then] is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another’ —and to love Him forever, I pray”


(2 John) Authorship & Audience

2 John -- Authorship:
*Author only identifies himself as “the elder” (2 John 1:1).
*Traditionally John the Beloved, Apostle, Disciple, Gospel Writer, and Revelator (but not John the Baptist)

2 John -- Audience:
“Unto the elect lady and her children.” (2 John 1:1)
*Probably not to an individual woman and her actual children, but to a church congregation and its members.
*The Greek word for church (ekklesia) is feminine, and church congregations were referred to in feminine terms.
*Normally grouped with the other “Catholic Epistles” (even though it is addressed to a specific congregation).


(2 John) Elect lady and “my children”

“The children of thy elect sister greet thee.” (2 John 1:13)

*Probably not referring to biological children of the real sister of an individual woman.
* “Thy elect sister” = the members of another Christian congregation (probably where John himself is writing from).


(3 John) Authorship & Audience

3 John -- Authorship:
*The author only identifies himself as “the elder” (3 John 1:1).
*Traditionally John the Beloved, Apostle, Disciple, Gospel Writer, and Revelator (but not John the Baptist)

3 John -- Audience:
“Unto the well-beloved Gaius, whom I love in the truth.” (3 John 1:1)
*Gaius was a member of the Christian congregation over which Diotrephes was the leader.
*Why didn’t John write directly to Diotrephes, the leader? Because Diotrephes was rebelling against the apostolic leadership.
*Normally grouped with the other “Catholic Epistles” (even though it is addressed to a specific person).


(3 John) Diotrephes & Gaius

John warned Gaius about one Diotrephes, who may have held a local leadership position in the Church or perhaps was the host of a local house-church congregation. Diotrephes openly opposed John and other Church officials and even prevented local Church members who wished to receive the Church officials from attending or speaking in Church meetings. John encouraged Gaius to continue in goodness and informed him that he would soon visit him.

Diotrephes was apparently either a leader in a local branch or the host of a house-church. John noted that because Diotrephes loved to have “preeminence” among the Saints, he rejected the authority of John and other Church leaders. Concerning people like Diotrephes, the Prophet Joseph Smith wrote, “It is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion”


(3 John) Diotrephes & Gaius [Continued...]

1. John wrote to the entire congregation, through their leader Diotrephes, but Diotrephes refused John’s letter.
2. Diotrephes loves his position
as leader of their congregation.
3. Diotrephes says evil things against John and other church leaders
4. Diotrephes refuses to let other Christians (including leaders like John) visit and teach his congregation
5. Diotrephes forbids his members to receive other Christian teachers (including leaders like John).
6. Diotrephes excommunicates those members who dare to receive other Christian teachers (including leaders like John)


(Revelation) Authorship & Audience

The book’s author identifies himself as John, the beloved disciple of Jesus Christ

John wrote a message of hope and encouragement to those in his day who still adhered to the teachings of Jesus Christ. The first three chapters of the book of Revelation were specifically addressed to seven branches of the Church in Asia Minor. It is unclear why these particular churches were singled out. While other branches of the Church had been established in Asia (such as at Pisidian Antioch), these seven may represent the Church as a whole (the number seven being symbolic of completeness). Historical sources indicate that John lived at Ephesus near the close of the first century, so he would have had close connections with the seven churches before his exile to Patmos, and he would have visited them as he ministered in Asia Minor. They may also have been among only a few branches that were still faithful and had not succumbed to apostasy and persecution. The faithful members of the Church lived in times of intense persecution, with all the Apostles gone except John, who was now in exile, and with many factions and problems in the Church. As a result, the Saints were in great need of the encouraging message found in Revelation. John reassured them that God was in control, Jesus Christ’s ultimate triumph over evil would be complete, and the hopes of all Christians would ultimately be realized.


(Revelation) Apocalyptic Literature

Revelation of John = Apocalypse of John
Genre (type of literature): Apocalyptic
“Apocalypse” = “unveiling / disclosure”
(Greek: apocalypsis)
Apocalypse: Disclosure of heavenly info
through imagery & symbolism
Apocalyptic literature teaches by imagery and REPETITION!

Best example of Apocalypse in Old Testament:
Book of Daniel


(Revelation) Importance of Numbers

Number Symbolism:
3, 4, 7, 10, 12, 100, 1000 = “perfection, wholeness, completeness”
Also – 8, 40, 6, 666, 3 1/2

The number four in the scriptures often suggests a geographical fulness, as in the four
directions on a compass.
In the scriptures, particularly in Revelation, the number three and a half often describes a limited period of tribulation during which evil forces are allowed to do their work

*The number 144,000 is symbolic (not literal).
*12 x 12 x 1000 = 144,000 = represents everyone with God’s seal
Think 12 tribes of Israel (God’s people) combined w/ 12 Apostles (God’s power)


(Revelation) review slide on symbolism in Revelation

Number Symbolism:
3, 4, 7, 10, 12, 100, 1000 = “perfection, wholeness, completeness”
Also – 8, 40, 6, 666, 3 1/2

Color Symbolism:
White = purity, victory
Black = evil, death
Red = blood, death
Pale Green = sickness,death

Other Symbolism:
Eyes = Knowledge
Horns = Power
Wings = Ability to move & act


(Revelation) Lamb and book in Rev 5

“And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book [i.e. scroll] written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals…”
“…And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?” (Rev. 5:1-2)
“Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou was slain, and has redeemed us to God by thy blood.” (Rev. 5:9)
“Worthy is the Lamb!” (Rev. 5:12)

The 7 seals represents various periods of time on this earth during “its continuance or its temporal existence.” (D&C 77:6)

A central message of Rev 5 is that Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, is the only One worthy to fulfill the work of God, which is represented by the book sealed with seven seals. Rev 5 depicts several groups worshipping Christ, declaring His worthiness in song.


(Revelation) Lamb and book in Rev 5 [Continued...]

The One worthy to open the book with seven seals was called “the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David.” Both of these phrases are titles of Jesus Christ. “Lion of the tribe of Juda” is a fitting title because a lion is majestic and powerful and because the Savior was born through the lineage of Judah. The title Lion of Judah is a stark contrast to the meek and sacrificial “Lamb” mentioned in verse 6. These two images convey that Christ possesses both majesty and meekness.
Jesus is also called the “Root of David.” The Gospel writers frequently emphasized that Jesus was a descendant of King David. Later in John’s revelation, Christ Himself declared, “I am the root and the offspring of David”. A root provides lifesaving water and nourishment to a plant—such was the mission of Jesus Christ to all who accept Him as their Savior and Redeemer


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Ephesus

Ephesus: “I [will] give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.”

The tree of life was planted in the Garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve walked and talked with God. After the Fall they were separated from the tree of life. Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, the effects of the Fall will be overcome. All people will be resurrected, thereby overcoming death, and the faithful will inherit eternal life. The angel described the reward of the faithful in this way: “To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life”. The term “overcometh” comes from the Greek verb nikaō, meaning “to be victorious.”

represents Christ & God himself, do not enter until you are prepared, "reentering Eden" to be in the presence of God


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Smyrna

Smyrna: “I will give thee a crown of life. . . . He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.”

A fulfillment of the Lord’s words can be seen in the life of Polycarp, a bishop of the church in Smyrna. Because he would not renounce his faith, he was burned at the stake as a martyr. Later Christians remembered Polycarp for the courage and faith he showed in the face of great adversity.

Revelation 2:11 teaches that the faithful “shall not be hurt of the second death.” The wicked, however, “shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8). While serving in the Presidency of the Seventy, Elder Earl C. Tingey explained that “the second death is spiritual. It is separation from God’s presence”


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Pergamos

Pergamos: “I [will] give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written.”

The Lord provided life-sustaining manna for the children of Israel to eat during their 40-year sojourn in the wilderness. Just as the manna sustained physical life, Jesus Christ is the “bread of life” that sustains spiritual life. The “hidden manna” mentioned in Revelation 2:17 refers to Jesus Christ. Jesus is “hidden” from the wicked. But, as He taught in John 6, those who symbolically partake of His flesh will receive everlasting life.
White stone - like temple recommend, given authority, power, knowledge, your name is on it, becomes Urim & Thummim
A personal Urim and Thummim in the form of a “white stone.” This stone becomes the means “whereby things pertaining to a higher order of kingdoms” are placed in their possession (v. 10). Individuals are initially prepared for these great blessings by keeping God’s commandments and receiving an endowment in the house of God


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Thyatira

Thyatira: “I [will] give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron. . . . And I will give him the morning star.”

“The morning star” is a symbol of Jesus Christ . The promise of “the morning star” is given to him “that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end”. It may be the promise of the Second Comforter, of which the Prophet Joseph Smith taught, “When any man obtains this [Second] Comforter, he will have the personage of Jesus Christ to attend him, or appear unto him from time to time, and even He will manifest the Father unto him, and they will take up their abode with him, and the visions of the heavens will be opened unto him, and the Lord will teach him face to face”


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Sardis

Sardis: “Shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.”


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Philadelphia

Philadelphia: “I [will] make [him] a pillar in the temple of my God, and . . . I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, . . . and I will write upon him my new name.”

The Lord declared that He will write “the name of my God” upon those who overcome. A name can suggest many ideas about a person, including the person’s identity, reputation, family, associations, attributes, role, and abilities.
Elder Bruce R. McConkie wrote about one of the meanings of this statement: “God’s name is God. To have his name written on a person is to identify that person as a god. . . . Those who gain eternal life become gods!


(Revelation) Promises to 7 churches - Laodicea

Laodicea: “I [will] grant [him] to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.”

Elder Bruce R. McConkie explained that sitting with the Lord on His throne means receiving the blessings of exaltation: “Through [the Atonement of Jesus Christ], all who believe and obey the glorious gospel of God, all who are true and faithful and overcome the world, all who suffer for Christ and his word, all who are chastened and scourged in the Cause of him whose we are—all shall become as their Maker and sit with him on his throne and reign with him forever in everlasting glory”


(Revelation) Final battles of Revelation

“The name Armageddon is derived from the Hebrew Har Megiddon, meaning the ‘mountain of Megiddo.’ The valley of Megiddo is the site of several crucial battles in Old Testament times. A great and final conflict that will take place near the time of the second coming of the Lord is called the battle of Armageddon because it will begin in the same locale. The battle that will begin at Har Megiddo will spread to Jerusalem.

*The Battle of Armageddon ushers in the 2nd Coming of Christ (i.e. it happens at the beginning of the millennium)
*They gather for the Battle of Armageddon (Rev. 16:16-21)
Megiddo = City in Galilee (cite of many ancient battles)
*Har Megiddo (Hebrew: “Mtn. of Megiddo”) = Armageddon
Represents final battle (at beginning of Millennium).
Likely symbolic, not literal (i.e. battle doesn’t have to take place precisely at this city).


(Revelation) Final battles of Revelation [Continued...]

John saw that after the Millennium, Satan would be loosed, and he and his evil forces would wage war against “the camp of the saints” and “the beloved city,” which is Zion, a place of safety and refuge. John referred to Satan’s host by the symbolic names “Gog and Magog.” In Revelation, “Gog and Magog” refer to the forces of Satan that will wage another battle at the end of the Millennium. Though the number of Satan’s forces will be “as the sand of the sea,” they will be “devoured” by “fire . . . from God out of heaven,” and the devil and his followers will be eternally “cast into the lake of fire and brimstone” With this final cleansing of evil, the earth will be prepared to receive celestial glory.

*They gather for the Battle of Gog and Magog
*The Battle of Gog and Magog ends the millennium
Gog & Magog = Gentile military rulers from OT (cf. Ezek., Jer., Isa.)
Gog & Magog came from north (Syria) and tried to destroy Israel.
Represents final battle (at end of millennium).
It is symbolic, not literal (i.e. Armies don’t have to come precisely from Syria).


(Revelation) Characteristics of New Jerusalem in Revelation 21-22

John saw in vision “the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down” to earth, symbolizing God’s presence among His people. The city was depicted as an enormous cube, which recalls the Holy of Holies in Solomon’s temple, also representative of God’s dwelling place. The symbolic elements John saw that compose the city—clear glass, precious stones, pearls, and gold—share the traits of reflecting light; resisting decaying or tarnishing; and symbolizing purity, beauty, and refinement. The walls of the city were made with all manner of precious stones. Precious stones often represent the Lord’s followers who have been refined and made holy. The gates of the city were made of pearls and the streets of gold. Both pearls and gold can be seen as symbols of refinement: oysters produce pearls through pain and adversity, and gold requires fire to burn out impurities. The exalted will likewise have been refined through adversity.


(Revelation) Characteristics of New Jerusalem in Revelation 21-22 [Continued...]

There is no need of temples in the Holy City because all of the celestial kingdom will be as a temple; God Himself and Jesus Christ dwell there. There is no need of the sun there, for “the Lamb is the light thereof”. John saw that a central feature of the Holy City was the tree of life, representative of the healing and eternal life found in the celestial kingdom. The tree of life in the Garden of Eden was guarded by cherubim after the Fall, but those who dwell in the Holy City have been redeemed from the Fall, and all there are free to partake of the everbearing tree of life in the celestial kingdom.


(Revelation) Angel that John tries to worship in Rev. 22

After all that John had seen and heard in his vision, he fell down to worship at the feet of the angel, but the angel replied, “See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant”. From modern scripture we learn about the angels who minister to the inhabitants of this earth: “There are no angels who minister to this earth but those who do belong or have belonged to it”. Hence, when messengers are sent to minister to the inhabitants of this earth, they are not strangers but are from the ranks of our kindred, friends, and fellow servants.


(Revelation) Basic chronological progression in Revelation

The Seven Seals (Seven 1,000-Year Periods of the Earth’s Temporal Existence)

First Five Seals—from the Creation to John’s Time
The first five seals described in the book of Revelation are dealt with in 11 verses (only 3% of the total verses in the book), while 281 verses (70 percent) deal with the sixth and seventh seals and the final glory of the earth. The Prophet Joseph Smith described this focus of the book of Revelation: “The things which John saw had no allusion to the scenes of the days of Adam, Enoch, Abraham or Jesus, only so far as is plainly represented by John. . . . John saw that only which was lying in futurity and which was shortly to come to pass”


(Revelation) Basic chronological progression in Revelation [Continued...]

Chronology of the Events in the Last Two Seals, Including Teaching Interludes

-Great calamities and signs are shown on earth and in heaven
-Destruction is held back while the righteous are sealed; the gospel is restored.
-Fire, destruction, and war are unleashed.
-Two special witnesses are slain in Jerusalem and then resurrected.
-Voices in heaven announce the triumph of God’s kingdom.
-Vials of judgment are poured out on the world; the wicked do not repent.


(Revelation) Basic chronological progression in Revelation [Continued...]

Last Two Seals—the Kingdom of God’s Triumphant Destiny

-Voices in heaven praise God and announce the marriage supper of the Lamb.
-Christ comes as King of kings; the wicked are destroyed.
-Satan is bound at the beginning of the Millennium.
-The righteous are resurrected and reign with Christ during the Millennium.
-Satan is loosed after the Millennium and wages a final battle; he is defeated and cast out.
-The Great and Last Judgment takes place.
-There is a new heaven and new earth; the world is celestialized.


(Revelation) Look for possible connections with historical events from John’s day

Open the first four seals!
White horse = victory or conquest
(1st thous. yrs. Wars of Enoch?)
Red horse = war or bloodshed
(2nd thous yrs., Flood era?)
Black horse = death or plague
(3rd thous. yrs., Great famines w/ Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob?)
Pale horse = death or sickness
(4rd thous. yrs., Great empires?
Open the fifth seal! = Christ & Christian martyrs
The Sixth Seal = The Millennium is dawning upon the world, we are at the end of the six thousand years, and the great day of rest, the Millennium of which the Lord has spoken, will soon dawn, and the Savior will come in the clouds of heaven to reign over his people on the earth one thousand years.