Study Guide

Johannine Epsitles (1-3 John) Genre

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John's Epistles are exactly what they say they are: epistles. That's just a fancy word meaning letters. So essentially, we're sorting through some of the elder's really old mail. Easy peasy lemon squeezey, right?

But hold up a second. 1 John isn't really a letter in the traditional sense. While 2 John and 3 John were sent to other Christians outside the community, 1 John is addressed to the people in the elder's community.

Does that make it a letter? Or is it more of a sermon? Or even an essay?

Either way, we think it would be pretty cool if someone were sitting around analyzing our emails two thousand years from now. (Source, 1178)

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