Summary: Analysis of 3 John. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: email@example.com)
Analysis of 3 John.
• (a). The encouragement of Gaius (vs 1-8)
• (B). The criticism of Diotrephes (vs 9-10)
• (c). The testimony of Demetrius (vs 11-12)
A grandmother was looking after her two little grandchildren;
• A 7-year-old girl, and a 5-year-old boy.
• And both these children had been very, very naughty.
• As the time drew near for their mother to pick them up,
• The little girl said, "Are you going to tell Mummy how we behaved?"
• The grandmother replied, "No, I’m not. But if she asks me, I can’t tell a lie."
• The little boy looked up to her and said, "Why not? I’m only five, and I can lie great."
• In 2 John the letter you look at last week;
• The problem was the woman had love but at the expense of truth!
• In 3 John the letter we are looking at this week;
• The problem was a man had truth but at the expense of love!
In the Greek text this is the shortest letter in the New Testament:
• Both 2 John and 3 John focuses on the basic issue of hospitality;
• But they come from, different angles.
• While 2 John warns against showing hospitality to false teachers;
• 3 John condemns the lack of hospitality shown to faithful teachers of God’s word.
(1). Comparison with 2 John.
• 2 John was written to a lady and her children,
• 3 John is written to a man and his acquaintances.
• The problem John addressed in his second letter;
• Was a lady entertaining the wrong kind of travellers, visitors.
• The problem in 3 John;
• Is a man who refused to entertain the right kind of travellers, visitors.
• In 2 John hospitality is misplaced.
• In 3 John hospitality is missing completely.
• It’s kind of ironic that in 2 John a lady said yes, to a person she should have said no too.
• In 3 John a man said no, to a person she should have said yes too.
• The message of 2 John is:
• Truth was needed to bring love back into balance.
• The message of 3 John is:
• Love was needed to bring truth back into balance.
• In 2 John no personal names are mentioned.
• In 3 John a number of specific names are mentioned.
• i.e. Gaius (vs 1-8), Diotrephes (vs 9-10), Demetrius (vs 11-12)
(2). Analysis of 3 John.
• An outline of this letter naturally forms around the three men that are mentioned:
• First in verses 1-8 we meet Gaius.
• Second in verses 9-10 we meet Diotrephes.
• Third in verses 11-12 we meet Demetrius.
(a). The encouragement of Gaius (vs 1-8)
• As you scan the letter it becomes clear that Gaius was very close to John.
• Just look at the affectionate way he refers to him.
• i.e. verse 1: “To my dear friend” or “Beloved Gaius”.
• i.e. verse 2: “Dear friend” or “Beloved Gaius”.
• i.e. verse 5: “Dear friend” or “Beloved Gaius”.
• i.e. verse 11: “Dear friend” or “Beloved Gaius”.
• We don’t know for sure who this particular Gaius was:
• We do know that there are there are three people called Gaius;
• Who get a name check in the New Testament.
• (a). Gaius the Macedonian – he is mentioned in Acts chapter 19.
• (b).Gaius of Derbe – he is mentioned in Acts chapter 20.
• (c). Gaius of Corinth – he actually gets a double mention;
• In 1 Corinthin’s chapter 1verse 4 and Romans chapter 16 verse 23.
• (d). Of course it might have been someone completely different;
• ill: The name Gaius was as popular in the Roman empire;
• As the names John or Richard are today.
• ill: The Romans had 18 names that they usually chose from;
• Gaius was in that list of 18!
• Now although we cannot tell with certainty who this Gaius was;
• We do know a number of things about him.
(1st). He was a sick man (vs 2).
• Those words “You may enjoy good health”,
• Suggest that Gaius may not have been a well man.
• In most New Testament greetings & prayers the focus is on spiritual health, not physical;
• So that mention of physical health would suggest he was or had been an unwell man.
(2). He was spiritually healthy (vs 2).
• “...even as your soul is getting along well”.
• Gaius may have failed his physical medical;
• But he ‘passed with flying colours’ his spiritual check up!
• It is amazing how many Christian folk who suffer very poor physical health;