“If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him…”
We come now to the second warning – intolerance for the access of antichrists to the local congregation.
If anyone comes to you
Traveling teachers depended on local people for lodging and finances (Ac 18:2-3; 21:7; 3 Jn 5-8). The “if” indicates the reality of the attendance of false teachers in the church at Ephesus.
and does not bring this doctrine,
“This doctrine” is the doctrine of the incarnate Christ. False teachers who denied the incarnation did visit the elect lady’s congregation. Their purpose was to spread the Gnostic doctrine.
For the third time, John uses the word “doctrine.” It is impossible to be a Christian without doctrine. We have to know Whom we believe, what we believe, and why we believe it. If a person is wrong about Christ, he is wrong about everything in Christianity. Jesus Christ is the substructure for everything in the Bible.
There is no latitude for difference in the doctrine of the incarnation.
There are doctrines in the Bible that leave room for an honest difference of opinion among evangelicals; however, there is no latitude in the doctrine of Christ. If we make a mistake about Jesus Christ, it will cost us our souls. He is the only way of access to heaven.
Jn 10:7-9, 7 “Then Jesus said to them again, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 “All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9 “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.’”
Jn 14:6, “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way [literally, road], the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’”
Ac 4:12, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
1 Co 3:11, “For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.”
Co 2:9-10, 9 “For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; 10 and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power.”