Scripture Focus- 3 John
Click Here To Watch The Sermon (Sermon Starts at 23:20 mark of the video)
Since the early days of the church, it has been believed John the Apostle wrote this epistle sometime around 85-95 AD. 2 John is written to address how to handle false teaching. 3 John is written to commend Gaius his friend; to condemn the behavior of a man named Diotrophes for his ungodly leadership; and to commend Demetrius for his good testimony.
v2 Dear friend, I pray that you are prospering in every way and are in good health, just as your whole life is going well.
Prosper here means “to go well with you”, to “succeed in reaching a goal”. What follows is spiritually focused. Prosperity Gospel proponents use verses like this to say God guarantees all who have faith in Jesus to be healthy and wealthy, which is opposite to the dangers and difficulties we all are subject to in a sin-fallen world.
1. Walk in Truth
Gaius is commended for v3 fidelity to the truth- walking in truth.
Truth- v1, 3, 4, 8, 12 Focus- v4 I have no greater joy than this: to hear that my children are walking in truth.
Truth= Firm/Constant/Enduring: Sincere/Real= Truth is that which corresponds to the character, will, and glory of God.
Gaius is commended for his v8 support for coworkers with the truth.
Effort- 2 Tim 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved unto God.
Progress- 2 Pet 3:18 Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord.
Love- 1 Cor 13:6 Love. . .rejoices with the truth.
The church is the pillar and foundation of truth.
2. Show Faithfulness
Gaius is commended for v5 acting faithfully in whatever you do for the brothers and sisters, especially when they are strangers.
Diotrophes is a contrasting example- John said if he came to the church he would remind him of what he was doing, slandering with malicious words. Unlike Gaius he did not welcome fellow believers and wanted to expel them from the church.
Why? He loved to have first place; did not receive authority; did what was evil. Mark 10:43-44 Whoever wants to become great among you will be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you will be a slave to all.
Before we read the passage, if I had asked, who are examples of faithfulness in the Bible, how would you have answered? God uses very ordinary, yet faithful people to do his will. (Romans 16 Examples)- Love God> Love People> Do The Will of God (Significance of Church)
3. Imitate What Is Good
V11 Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. The one who does good is of God: the one who does evil has not seen God.
Imitate= to mimic, to do what is seen in another, to follow a pattern
1 John 2:6 The one who says he remains in Him should walk just as He walked; 1 Corinthians 11:1 Imitate me, as I also imitate Christ.
Demetrius– v11 Everyone speaks well of- even the truth itself. And we also speak well of him, and you know that our testimony is true.
Character; Consistency; Christlikeness
Peace to you!