A Living Contradiction

When you think of the Apostle John, you know, the one who wrote a Gospel, three letters and an apocalypse, what is your vision?

Is he the messenger of love? Or a Son of Thunder?

John MacArthur wrote in his book on the apostles, Twelve Ordinary Men that John grew from a strong, opinionated, ambitious person to someone who could also embody the type of love Jesus pointed to.

MacArthur says that John learned to temper his passion for Truth (one of John’s favorite words) with Love (his other favorite word).

How often are we as young people, perhaps freshly educated (or semi-educated) from the university, so full of truth and ourselves that we just want to command everyone into the proper ways?

Then we grow up at some point in our lives and learn that this truth needs to be tempered by patience, empathy, joy, grace (love). Then we are a complete person.

John has always been my favorite, but not so much for either truth or love, but because he seemed the most “spiritual” whereas Peter seemed the most “practical” of the apostles. Paul also was more of a practical preacher than a spiritual teacher.

MacArthur rightly points out that being a walking contradiction is not a bad thing. Strongly defending truth yet showing love to our neighbor–they go together.

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