“"Losing What You Worked For"”Categories: Apostasy, Bible, Christian, Compromise, Daily Living, Expository Study, False Doctrine, Fellowship, Gospel, Heaven, Hell, John, New Testament, Obedience, Paul, Salvation, Satan, Sin, Temptation
After warning people about the deceivers and antichrists that were rampant in the first century, John warned that some might lose what they had “wrought” (KJV) or “worked for” (NET, ESV, CEV, ISV, etc.) as Christians. This short verse encapsulates what every Christian needs to do in order to remain faithful and see Heaven one day. II John 8 says, “Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.”
“Look to yourselves” in this verse means examine yourselves (II Cor. 13:5). Don’t assume that everything in your life is “fine.” Don’t think there is nothing in your life you need to change or correct. In this context, John tells Christians to look to themselves and make sure they are not deceived (II Jn. 7). In like manner, you need to look into the “perfect law of liberty” (Jas. 1:25) like you would look into a mirror, and make the necessary changes. “Look to yourselves,” and make sure men do not deceive you. “Look to yourselves” and make sure you are growing closer to God daily (Jas. 4:8). “Look to yourselves” and make sure you tell others about the truth of Christ (II Tim. 2:2). “Look to yourselves” and make sure your thoughts, words, and deeds agree with what God says (Phil. 4:8-9). No one can do this for you. It is a responsibility each Christian must accept.
Why take the time to examine ourselves? It is so we won’t lose what we have worked for, or “wrought.” In other words, it is possible to lose what we once had! The mental gymnastics some teach when they say, “If you lost it, you never had it, if you have you can’t lose it, if you lose it, it wasn’t yours” has no basis in Scripture at all. It contradicts II John 8, and many other passages.
Let us examine ourselves and make sure we do not lose what we have worked for that we might receive that “full reward.” The “full reward” is a home in Heaven! John (the elder, v. 1) wanted his children to remember God’s promise and remain faithful. The apostle Paul had the same concern (II Cor. 11:3).
Satan works overtime to tempt Christians to return to his kingdom. He wants us to be deceived, be frustrated, and be overwhelmed with the affairs in this life so that we quit the Lord. When we yield to those temptations, our sin results in death (Jas. 1:15) and losing the reward we have. Please make sure and beware of Satan’s devices (II Cor. 2:11). His goals are the opposite of God’s!
Friend, read II John 8 once more. Decide that you will do God’s word and be faithful to His teaching (I Cor. 15:58). You will never regret making the decision to avoid deceit and follow God’s truth!
- Jarrod M. Jacobs