B.J. Staten and Michael Sim were in the clubhouse at 4-under 67, while Jason Caron and Benjamin Alvarado were both 4 under through 17 holes.
Greg Chalmers, Jarrod Lyle, John Kimbell, Michael Putnam and Casey Wittenberg all shot 68.
The round was suspended at 6:42 p.m. local time with 18 of the 131 players still on the course. It will be completed Friday morning at Tres Marias Golf Club, and the second round will begin on time.
Johnson, a rookie on the PGA TOUR last season, finished off his 65 not too long before play was halted. After beginning modestly on the back nine with three straight pars, he made six birdies in a 10-hole stretch to take the lead.
Making only one bogey during the round, Johnson stretched his lead to two shots with a birdie at No. 8, his 17th hole.
'Getting around the back nine in 3 under was a bonus for me,' said Johnson. 'That's the more difficult side and I was hoping to make some pars and then do some scoring on the front nine.'
He is being cautious with the lead, and for good reason.
Last week, Johnson was in the top 10 after the first round of the season- opening Panama Championship, but a Friday 78 left him two shots off the cut line.
'I might have started thinking ahead,' he said. 'I was thinking about winning and stuff like that. I know how quickly things can change.'
The scoring average was at 73.461 when play was suspended, almost three full shots above par. The course, which sits 6,600 feet above sea level, saw steady winds between 20-25 mph.
'So many times we're used to seeing seven-, eight- or nine-under par leading a Nationwide Tour event. We have to remember that 2- to 4-under is a really good score on this golf course,' said Staten. 'There are holes out here you can attack but there are holes you can make serious numbers on.'