Saturday, May 23, 2009

New Testament survey (25): 3 John

For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers; Which have borne witness of thy charity before the church: whom if thou bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well: Because that for his name’s sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles. We therefore ought to receive such, that we might be fellowhelpers to the truth. (3 John 3-8)

I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church. Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. (3 John 9-11)


[1] 3 John, from Thru The Bible Radio with Dr. J. Vernon McGee ©, with free downloads Notes & Outlines (PDF), Complete 5-Year Study (MP3)

As we come now to the third epistle, there is a similarity to John’s second letter in some ways. It is very personal in character, and it carries the same theme of truth. Truth again is presented as all–important. When truth and love come into conflict, truth must survive. This means that you are not to love the false teacher. Walking in truth is all–important. (Read the complete article)
[2] Book of 3 John, from (this website is also available in Afrikaans, Arabic, Bengali, Burmese-Myanmar, Cebuano, Chinese - Simplified, Chinese – Traditional, Hausa, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Khmer, Korean, Malaysian, Persian-Farsi, Portuguese, Quechua, Sesotho, Spanish, Swahili, Tagalog, Tamil, Thai, Urdu, Vietnamese, Zulu, and 70 other languages)
John’s purpose in writing this second epistle is threefold. First, he writes to commend and encourage his beloved co-worker, Gaius, in his ministry of hospitality to the itinerant messengers who were going from place to place to preach the Gospel of Christ. Second, he indirectly warns and condemns the behavior of one Diotrephes, a dictatorial leader who had taken over one of the churches in the province of Asia, and whose behavior was directly opposed to all that the apostle and his Gospel stood for. Third, he commends the example of Demetrius who was reported as having a good testimony from all. (Read the complete article)
[3] 3 John, from Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)
WRITER: The Apostle John.

DATE: Probably about A.D. 90.

THEME: The aged Apostle had written to a church which allowed one Diotrephes to exercise an authority common enough in later ages, but wholly new in the primitive churches. Diotrephes had rejected the apostolic letters and authority. It appears also that he had refused the ministry of the visiting brethren (3 John 1:10), and cast out those that had received them. Historically, this letter marks the beginning of that clerical and priestly assumption over the churches in which the primitive church order disappeared. This Epistle reveals, as well, the believer’s resource in such a day. No longer writing as an apostle, but as an elder, John addresses this letter, not to the church as such, but to a faithful man in the church for the comfort and encouragement of those who were standing fast in the primitive simplicity. Second John conditions the personal walk of the Christian in a day of apostasy; Third John the personal responsibility in such a day of the believer as a member of the local church. The key-phrase is “the truth” (see 2 John, Introduction).

There are three divisions:

1. Personal greetings, 3 John 1-4
2. Instructions concerning ministering brethren, 3 John 5-8
3. The apostate leader and the good Demetrius, 3 John 9-14

[1] Key verses: 3 John 4, 11

[2] Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. (3 John 2) Please read “The Bankruptcy of the Prosperity Gospel: An Exercise in Biblical and Theological Ethics” by David Jones M.Div.; Ph.D. Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

[3] Bible verses on hospitality: Exodus 22:21; 23:9; Leviticus 19:10, 33-34; 24:22; Deuteronomy 10:18-19; 26:12-13; 27:19; Proverbs 9:1-5; 23:6-8; Isaiah 58:6,7; Matthew 22:2-10; 25:34-46; Luke 14:12-14; Romans 12:13; 16:1,2; 1 Timothy 3:2; 5:10; Titus 1:7,8; Hebrews 13:2; 1 Peter 4:9,11; 3 John 5-8

[4] Article of Faith: Of Missions
The command to give the gospel to the world is clear and unmistakable and this Great Commission was given to the churches. (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8; Romans 10:13-15)
[5] Bible verses on evangelism and missions: Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 6:1-8; Matthew 9:37-38; 10:5-15; 13:18-30, 37-43; 16:19; 22:9-10; 24:14; 28:18-20; Luke 10:1-18; 24:46-53; John 14:11-12; 15:7-8,16; 17:15; 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2; 8:26-40; 10:42-48; 13:2-3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 3:1-11; 1 Thessalonians 1:8; 2 Timothy 4:5; Hebrews 2:1-3; 11:39-12:2; 1 Peter 2:4-10; Revelation 22:17.

Further study
(Be like the Bereans! Acts 17:11)

[1] 3 John: Introduction, Argument, and Outline, by Daniel B. Wallace, Th.M., Ph.D

[2] Exegetical Commentary on 3 John 1-15, by W. Hall Harris III, Th.M., Ph.D.

[3] The Non-Pauline Epistles, by J. Hampton Keathley, III, Th.M. (also available in Spanish)

[4] The Bankruptcy of the Prosperity Gospel: An Exercise in Biblical and Theological Ethics, by David Jones M.Div.; Ph.D. Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

Sermons on 3 John (Be like the Bereans! Acts 17:11)

[1] The Big Little Books of Truth and Love - Part 7, by Brad Shockley, Lancaster Baptist Church

[2] Sermon illustrations on 3 John, from

[3] Imitate What is Good to Spread the Truth, by Nathan Kuperus

[4] 3 John, by David Allen Garrett

[5] Growing in your love walk 3 John apostle of love, by Steven L. Spencer

For other available sermons, please surf to Sermon / Preaching resources. Sermons are also available from South McGehee Baptist Church, McGehee, Arizona; Central Baptist Church, Lowesville; First Baptist Church, Mountain View, Missouri; Swift Creek Baptist Church; Word of Life Baptist Church, Pottsville, Philadelphia; Palm Springs Baptist Church, California; South Woods Baptist Church; Grove Baptist Church, Ulster; Dudley Baptist Church, United Kingdom; Independent Fundamental Baptist Sermons, Fundamental Christian Radio Broadcasts, Off-Site Audio Page and The Christian Radio Tuner

Notes: (1) This ministry does not necessarily endorse or share all the views and opinions expressed in the materials, resources or links mentioned in these posts. Please always refer to the Articles of Faith and Biblical distinctives of Baptists when you study these materials. (2) This lesson is part of the projected 300 plus lessons. From time to time, the lessons will be updated, revised, combined, formatted, and edited to comply with the VOA Simplified English word list. Later on, these lessons will be categorized, numbered sequentially, and made available as PDF downloads.

No comments: