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November 29, 2023 - 3 John

John writes his third letter to Gaius and commends him for his faithful care of brothers in Christ. Fairly obviously, these are preachers and ministers of the gospel, “fellow workers for the truth” (8) who are with Gaius for a bit and then sent on their way. John does not specify what Gaius has done to care for these brothers, but the effort is even more noteworthy because, as John notes, they are strangers to Gaius.


A second matter has to do with Diotrephes, who is so much unlike Gaius. Diotrephes puts himself first and refuses to help the brothers. He even fights against those who do want to help, and he tries to put them out of the church.”


One final example is Demetrius, who “has received a good testimony from everyone” (12), writes John. I imagine, in our churches, we can point out a modern day Gaius, a Diotrephes, and a Demetrius or two. And therein lies the importance of this letter. John concludes, “Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God” (11). In other words (back to our DirectTV commercials), don’t be like Diotrephes; be like Gaius and Demetrius.


Walk together, children, don’t you get weary,

walk together, children, don’t you get weary,

walk together, children, don’t you get weary,

there’s a great camp meeting in the promised land. --African American Spiritual

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