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The New Oxford Annotated Bible New Revised Standard Study Bible that provides essential scholarship and guidance for Bible readers.

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Commentary on The Third Letter of John

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1–2 : Letter opening and health wish.

This secular opening (contrast 2 Jn 1–3 ) indicates that this is a private letter from the Elder (of 2 Jn 1 ) to Gaius. Beloved (vv. 2,5,11 ) indicates the relationship of friendship and hospitality that this letter seeks to establish (see Introduction).

3–12 : Letter body.

The Elder hopes that Gaius will provide a permanent base of support for traveling missionaries.

3–8 :

Other missionaries have given a glowing report about Gaius, testified to your love before the church (v. 6 ). Traveling missionaries need to receive help from fellow Christians so that they will not have to turn to unbelievers (v. 7 ).

9–11 :

The Elder is turning to Gaius because a prominent Christian in the region, Diotrephes, now refuses to have anything to do with missionaries sent by the Elder (vv. 9–10 ; see Introduction). Does not acknowledge our authority implies that Diotrephes refused to accept a previous letter from the Elder to the church in the region. However, a personal visit could heal the breach (v. 10 ).

12 :

The Elder adds a recommendation for Demetrius (see Rom 16.1–2 ), who may have brought the letter to Gaius.

13–15 : Letter Closing.

See 2 Jn 12–13 .

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