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1-3 John - Reformed Expository Commentary (O'Donnell)

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P&R Publishing
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How can we know that we possess eternal life? The apostle John answered that question in the three epistles that bear his name. He wrote that we must firstly believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that Christ came in the flesh. Secondly, we are to obey God’s commandments. Thirdly, we must love others.

In this illuminating and engaging commentary on John’s letters, pastor-scholar Douglas Sean O’Donnell illustrates and applies these three essential tests that judge whether we possess eternal life or not. Grow in your knowledge of Christ, our Savior. Learn how to live in the light. Grab hold of the gospel-transformed life!

Table of Contents:

  1. Apostolic Fellowship (1 John 1:1-4)
  2. Live in the Light (1 John 1:5-10)
  3. Advocacy and Example (1 John 2:1-6)
  4. Why Love Matters (1 John 2:7-11)
  5. Knowing Christ and Overcoming the Devil (1 John 2:12-14)
  6. What Not to Love (1 John 2:15-17)
  7. Antichrist Is Coming! (1 John 2:18-27)
  8. The Appearance Is Everything (1 John 2:28-3:10)
  9. What We Know (1 John 3:11-24)
  10. Who’s Got Your Ear? (1 John 4:1-6)
  11. The Two Loves (1 John 4:7-21)
  12. The Nature and Knowledge of Faith (1 John 5:1-12)
  13. Festival of Faith (1 John 5:13-21)
  14. In Truth and Love (2 John)
  15. Seven Important Lessons from 219 Inspired Words (3 John)



“Written with wit, learning, and savvy, this is a commentary to read and savor. . . . Each chapter amounts to an informative, uplifting, and challenging appeal. If more pastors preached like this, and more believers saw these truths in Scripture, both church and society would be moving in far better directions. Read this book! You’ll find in John’s holy epistles fresh meaning, life, hope, and direction.” — Robert W. Yarbrough, Professor of New Testament, Covenant Theological Seminary

“What do you preach—not only to plant a church but to help it to survive the invasion of false teachers, loveless strife, and immorality? This enduring question emphasizes the vital relevance of John’s letters for churches in every time and place. Written by a pastor for pastors, Douglas O’Donnell’s commentary offers a rich feast for the servers as well as their diners.” — Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics, Westminster Seminary California

“Creative storytelling and contemporary references combined with careful examination of the text make Douglas O’Donnell’s commentary on 1–3 John an essential resource for understanding and teaching these oft-neglected epistles.” — Nancy Guthrie, Author, Seeing Jesus in the Old Testament Bible Study series

“O’Donnell’s work is marked by solid exegesis, a knowledge of church history, and faithful theology. . . . I was helped and encouraged by this commentary, and I commend it gladly.” — Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary