[CF Devotionals] 2011-11-08 - 1 John 1

The Epistles of John ~ Part 2 ~ False Teachings

Another position holds that John was dealing with Docetism, a view which held that Jesus only appeared to be human, but that this was an illusion. Since these letters were written during the early days of the church, it would probably be a mistake to try to identify an established heresy. John states that he is speaking out against a number of false teachers.

Tradition states though that John was especially concerned with Cerinthus, the leader of a specific cultic sect. Ireanaeus quotes Cerinthus as having

"… represented Jesus as having not been born of a virgin, but as being the son of Joseph and Mary according to the ordinary course of human generation, while he nevertheless was more righteous, prudent and wise than other men. Moreover, after his baptism, Christ descended upon him in the form of a dove from the Supreme Ruler, and that then he proclaimed the unknown Father, and performed miracles. But at last Christ departed from Jesus, and that then Jesus suffered and rose again, while Christ remained impassible, inasmuch as he was a spiritual being."

Similar views are found today in some of the cults and in New Age teachings. Often this position is identifiable by discussions of the "Christ Consciousness."

Taking the above into consideration, conservative scholarship holds that the letter of 1 John was published in the providence of Asia. (This Asia, not to be confused with the continent of Asia, would have been located in western Turkey.)

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