Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.
The building shut down. The lights were turned off, and the doors were locked. Huddled in the darkness of a broom closet, the recently employed Vincenzo Perugia anxiously awaited his opportunity. When the coast seemed clear, he crept from his closet undetected by the security guards. The young Italian patriot sneaked across the hall and down the corridor that held the highly acclaimed Da Vinci masterpiece, Mona Lisa. In an instant, the painting was tucked beneath his coat and he was gone. The theft of the most high profile painting in the world had occurred from one of the most secure museums in the world.
It was two years later that Perugia was caught and the Italian painting was returned to its French home. How could something this valuable be lost? Didn’t the Louvre Museum know that it would be the target of crafty thieves like Perugia? Why didn’t they take counter-measures to ensure that it would never be stolen? Learning from the mistakes of the past, the Louvre now has a $7.5 million state-of-the-art security room that the Mona Lisa stays in. The museum knows that something this valuable is worth keeping.
Similarly, 2 John 8 tells us that there are some things worth keeping. The truth as revealed from God is worth keeping. A love for others is worth keeping. A discernment against those that would deceive is worth keeping. We must guard our hearts and minds at all cost. The truth we hold is more valuable than any 20” painting could ever be. We must guard from any thief who would craftily steal the truth away from our hearts through deceit or lies. We must watch for the deceit from within, like a burglar huddled in the broom closet waiting for the opportunity to capitalize on a lack of guard. Deception does not knock at the door and introduce itself, it stealthy creeps in and topples all that is valuable.
We must guard our hearts from those that would delude us. We must hold the truth tightly. It is of eternal value.
Food For Thought: Since we have the truth, what does John tell us to do with it?