JOHN’S THIRD EPISTLE
3rd John is addressed to an individual; a dear friend of John named Gaius. John compliments Gaius on “walking in the truth” and on his hospitality shown toward traveling missionaries. In the letter John also speaks well of a man named Demetrius. He may have been the one carrying the letter to Gaius. John also tells Gaius about the behavior of a church member named Diotrephes. This man loved to put himself first in church work, gossiped maliciously, showed no hospitality toward traveling evangelists, and put out of the church those who wanted to show hospitality. He must have been a proud and vain man who was really serving himself instead of Christ’s church. John urged Gaius and all who want to be faithful church workers: “Do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God” (v.11).
“THE APOSTLE OF LOVE ENCOURAGES A DEAR FRIEND, GAIUS”
Key passages: “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth” (v.4). “Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good” (v.11a).
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