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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(3 John: Chapter 1)

1:1 {The beloved} (t“i agapˆt“i). Four times in this short letter this verbal adjective is used of Gaius (here, 2,5,11). See 2Jo 1:1 for the same phrase here, "whom I love in truth."

1:2 {I pray} (euchomai). Here only in John's writings. See Ro 9:3.
{In all things} (peri pant“n). To be taken with euodousthai and like peri in 1Co 16:1, "concerning all things."
{Thou mayest prosper} (se euodousthai). Infinitive in indirect discourse (object infinitive) after euchomai, with accusative of general reference se (as to thee). Euodo“ is old verb (from euodos, eu and hodos, prosperous in a journey), to have a good journey, to prosper, in LXX, in N.T. only this verse (twice), 1Co 16:2; Ro 1:10.
{Be in health} (hugiainein). In Paul this word always means sound teaching (1Ti 1:10; 6:3), but here and in Lu 5:31; 7:10; 15:27, of bodily health. Brooke wonders if Gaius' health had caused his friends anxiety.
{Even as thy soul prospereth} (kath“s euodoutai sou hˆ psuchˆ). A remarkable comparison which assumes the welfare (present middle indicative of euodo“) of his soul (psuchˆ here as the principle of the higher life as in Joh 12:27, not of the natural life as in Mt 6:25).

1:3 {I rejoiced greatly} (echarˆn lian). As in 2Jo 1:4; Php 4:10, not epistolary aorist, but reference to his emotions at the good tidings about Gaius.
{When brethren came} (erchomen“n adelph“n). Genitive absolute with present middle participle of erchomai, and so with marturount“n (bare witness, present active participle of marture“). Present participle here denotes repetition, from time to time.
{To the truth} (tˆi alˆtheiƒi). Dative case. "As always in the Johannine writings, 'truth' covers every sphere of life, moral, intellectual, spiritual" (Brooke). {Even as thou walkest in truth} (kath“s su en alˆtheiƒi peripateis). "Thou" in contrast to Diotrephes (verse 9) and others like him. On peripate“ see 1Jo 1:6 and on en alˆtheiƒi see 2Jo 1:4.

1:4 {Greater} (meizoteran). A double comparative with -teros added to meiz“n, like our "lesser" and like mallon kreisson (more better) in Php 1:23. In Eph 3:8 we have elachistoter“i, a comparative on a superlative. Like forms occur in the vernacular papyri and even in Homer (cheiroteros, more worse) as also in Shakespeare.
{Joy} (charan). B reads charin (grace).
{Than this} (tout“n). Ablative neuter plural after the comparative.
{To hear of} (hina akou“). Object clause (epexegetic) with hina and akou“, the present active subjunctive (keep on hearing of) in apposition with tout“n, {Walking in truth} (en alˆtheiƒi peripatounta). As in 2Jo 1:4, which see. By the use of tekna John may mean that Gaius is one of his converts (1Ti 1:1).

1:5 {A faithful work} (piston). Either thus or "thou makest sure," after an example in Xenophon quoted by Wettstein (poiein pista) and parallel to kaina poie“ in Re 21:5. But it is not certain.
{In whatsoever thou doest} (ho ean ergasˆi). Indefinite relative with modal ean (=\an) and the first aorist middle subjunctive of ergazomai. See Col 3:23 for both poie“ and ergazomai in the same sentence.
{And strangers withal} (kai touto xenous). "And that too" (accusative of general reference as in 1Co 6:6; Php 1:28; Eph 2:8). This praise of hospitality (Ro 12:13; 1Pe 4:9; 1Ti 3:2; 5:10; Tit 1:8; Heb 13:2) shows that in 2Jo 1:10 John has a peculiar case in mind.

1:6 {Before the church} (en“pion ekklˆsias). Public meeting as the anarthrous use of ekklˆsia indicates, like en ekklˆsiƒi in 1Co 14:19,35.
{Thou wilt do well} (kal“s poiˆseis). Future active of poie“ with adverb kal“s, a common polite phrase in letters (papyri) like our "please." See also Ac 10:33; Jas 2:19; 1Co 7:37f.; Php 4:14; 2Pe 1:19.
{To set forward on their journey} (propempsas). First aorist active participle (simultaneous action) of propemp“, to send forward, "sending forward," old word, in N.T. in Ac 15:3; 20:38; 21:5; 1Co 16:6,11; 2Co 1:16; Ro 15:24; Tit 3:13.
{Worthily of God} (axi“s tou theou). Precisely this phrase in 1Th 2:12 and the genitive with axi“s also in Ro 16:2; Php 1:27; Col 1:10; Eph 4:1. See Joh 13:20 for Christ's words on the subject. "Since they are God's representatives, treat them as you would God" (Holtzmann). From Homer's time ("Od". XV. 74) it was customary to speed the parting guest, sometimes accompanying him, sometimes providing money and food. Rabbis were so escorted and Paul alludes to the same gracious custom in Ro 15:24; Tit 3:13.

1:7 {For the sake of the Name} (huper tou onomatos). The name of Jesus. See Ac 5:4; Ro 1:5 for huper tou onomatos and Jas 2:7 for the absolute use of "the name" as in 1Pe 4:16. "This name is in essence the sum of the Christian creed" (Westcott) as in 1Co 12:3; Ro 10:9. It is like the absolute use of "the Way" (Ac 9:2; 19:9,23; 24:22).
{Taking nothing} (mˆden lambanontes). Present active participle with the usual negative with participles (1Jo 2:4).
{Of the Gentiles} (apo t“n ethnik“n). Instead of the usual ethn“n (Lu 2:32), late adjective for what is peculiar to a people (ethnos) and then for the people themselves (Polybius, Diodorus, not in LXX), in N.T. only here, Mt 5:47; 6:7; 18:17. Like our heathen, pagan. John is anxious that Christian missionaries receive nothing from the heathen, as our missionaries have to watch against the charge of being after money. There were many travelling lecturers out for money. Paul in 1Co 9 defends the right of preachers to pay, but refuses himself to accept it from Corinth because it would be misunderstood (cf. 1Th 2:6ff.; 2Co 12:16ff. 12:16ff.). Note apo here as in collecting taxes (Mt 17:25) rather than para, which may be suggestive.

1:8 {Ought} (opheilomen). See for this word 1Jo 2:6; 3:16; 4:11.
{To welcome} (hupolambanein). Present active infinitive (habit of welcoming) of hupolamban“, old word, to take up under, to carry off (Ac 1:9), to reply (Lu 10:30), to suppose (Ac 2:15), only here in N.T. in this sense of receiving hospitably or to take under one's protection like hupodechomai (Lu 10:38).
{Such} (tous toioutous). "The such" according to the Greek idiom (1Co 16:16,18).
{That we may be} (hina gin“metha). Purpose clause with hina and the present middle subjunctive of ginomai, "that we may keep on becoming." {Fellow-workers} (sunergoi). Old compound (sun, ergon).
{With the truth} (tˆi alˆtheiƒi). So associative instrumental case with sun in sunergoi, but it is not certain that this is the idea, though sunerge“ is so used with ergois in Jas 2:22. Sunergos itself occurs with the genitive of the person as in theou sunergoi (1Co 3:9) or with genitive of the thing tˆs charƒs (1Co 3:9). So then here the meaning may be either "co-workers with such brethren for the truth" (dative of advantage) or "co-workers with the truth" (associative instrumental case).

1:9 {I wrote somewhat unto the church} (egrapsa ti tˆi ekklˆsiƒi). A few MSS. add an to indicate that he had not written (conclusion of second-class condition), clearly spurious. Not epistolary aorist nor a reference to II John as Findlay holds, but an allusion to a brief letter of commendation (Ac 18:27; 2Co 3:1; Col 4:10) sent along with the brethren in verses 5-7 or to some other itinerant brethren. Westcott wrongly thinks that ti is never used of anything important in the N.T. (Ac 8:9; Ga 6:3), and hence that this lost letter was unimportant. It may have been brief and a mere introduction. Diotrephes (Dios and treph“, nourished by Zeus). This ambitious leader and sympathiser with the Gnostics would probably prevent the letter referred to being read to the church, whether it was II John condemning the Gnostics or another letter commending Demetrius and John's missionaries. Hence he sends Gaius this personal letter warning against Diotrephes.
{Who loveth to have the preeminence among them} (ho philopr“teu“n aut“n). Present active articular participle of a late verb, so far found only here and in ecclesiastical writers (the example cited by Blass being an error, Deissmann, "Light" etc., p. 76), from philopr“tos, fond of being first (Plutarch), and made like philopone“ (papyri), to be fond of toil. This ambition of Diotrephes does not prove that he was a bishop over elders, as was true in the second century (as Ignatius shows). He may have been an elder (bishop) or deacon, but clearly desired to rule the whole church. Some forty years ago I wrote an article on Diotrephes for a denominational paper. The editor told me that twenty-five deacons stopped the paper to show their resentment against being personally attacked in the paper.
{Receiveth us not} (ouk epidechetai hˆmƒs). Present active indicative of this old compound, in N.T. only here and verse 10. Diotrephes refused to accept John's authority or those who sided with him, John's missionaries or delegates (cf. Mt 10:40).

1:10 {If I come} (ean elth“). Condition of third class with ean and second aorist active subjunctive of erchomai. He hopes to come (verse 14), as he had said in 2Jo 1:12 (one argument for identifying II John with the letter in 3Jo 1:9). {I will bring to remembrance} (hupomnˆs“). Future active indicative of hupomimnˆsk“, old compound (Joh 14:26; 2Pe 1:12). The aged apostle is not afraid of Diotrephes and here defies him.
{Which he doeth} (ha poiei). Present active indicative, "which he keeps on doing."
{Prating against us} (phluar“n hˆmƒs). Present active participle of old verb (from phluaros, babbling 1Ti 5:13), to accuse idly and so falsely, here only in N.T. with accusative hˆmƒs (us).
{With wicked words} (logois ponˆrois). Instrumental case. Not simply foolish chatter, but malevolent words.
{Not content} (mˆ arkoumenos). Present passive participle of arke“ with usual negative . For this verb in this sense see 1Ti 6:8; Heb 13:5, only there epi is absent. John knows that the conduct of Diotrephes will not stand the light. See Paul's threats of exposure (1Co 4:21; 2Co 10:11; 13:1-3). And John is the apostle of love all the same.
{He himself} (autos). That was bad enough.
{Them that would} (tous boulomenous). "Those willing or wishing or receive the brethren" from John.
{He forbiddeth} (k“luei). "He hinders." Present active indicative of k“lu“ and means either actual success in one case (punctiliar use of the present indicative) or repetition in several instances (linear action) or conative action attempted, but not successful as in Mt 3:14 (this same verb) and Joh 10:32.
{Casteth them out of the church} (ek tˆs ekklˆsias ekballei). Here again ekballei can be understood in various ways, like k“luei. This verb occurs in Joh 2:15 for casting out of the temple the profaners of it and for casting the blind man out of the synagogue (Joh 9:34f.). If this ancient "church-boss" did not succeed in expelling John's adherents from the church, he certainly tried to do it.

1:11 {Imitate not} (mˆ mimou). Present middle imperative in prohibition (do not have the habit of imitating) of mimeomai (from mimos, actor, mimic), old word, in N.T. only here, 2Th 3:7,9; Heb 13:7.
{That which is evil} (to kakon). "The bad," as in Ro 12:21 (neuter singular abstract).
{But that which is good} (alla to agathon). "But the good." As in Ro 12:21 again. Probably by the contrast between Diotrephes and Demetrius. {He that doeth good} (ho agathopoi“n). Articular present active participle of agathopoie“, late and rare verb, in contrast with ho kakopoi“n (old and common verb) as in Mr 3:4; Lu 6:9; 1Pe 3:17.
{Is of God} (ek tou theou estin). As in 1Jo 3:9f. {Hath not seen God} (ouch he“raken ton theon). As in 1Jo 3:6. He does not say ek tou diabolou as Jesus does in Joh 8:44, but he means it.

1:12 {Demetrius hath the witness of all men} (Dˆmˆtri“i memarturˆtai hupo pant“n). Perfect passive indicative of marture“, "it has been witnessed to Demetrius (dative case) by all." We know nothing else about him, unless, as is unlikely, he be identified with Demas as a shortened form (Phm 1:24; Col 4:4; 2Ti 4:10), who has come back after his desertion or with the Ephesian silversmith (Ac 19:21ff.), who may have been converted under John's ministry, which one would like to believe, though there is no evidence for it. He may indeed be the bearer of this letter from Ephesus to Gaius and may also have come under suspicion for some reason and hence John's warm commendation. {And of the truth itself} (kai hupo autˆs tˆs alˆtheias). A second commendation of Demetrius. It is possible, in view of 1Jo 5:6 (the Spirit is the truth), that John means the Holy Spirit and not a mere personification of the truth.
{Yea we also} (kai hˆmeis de). A third witness to Demetrius, that is John himself (literary plural).
{Thou knowest} (oidas). "The words in Joh 21:24 sound like an echo of this sentence" (Westcott). John knew Demetrius well in Ephesus.

1:13 {I had} (eichon). Imperfect active of ech“, when I began to write (grapsai, ingressive aorist active infinitive of graph“).
{I am unwilling to write} (ou thel“ graphein). "I do not wish to go on writing them.
{With ink and pen} (dia melanos kai kalamou), "by means of (dia) black (ink) and reed (used as pen)." See 2Jo 1:12 for melanos and Mt 11:7 for kalamos, used for papyrus and parchment, as grapheion (a sharp stilus) for wax tablets.

1:14 {I hope} (elpiz“) {--We shall speak} (lalˆsomen). Literary plural really singular like elpiz“.
{Face to face} (stoma pros stoma). As in 2Jo 1:12.

{Peace to thee} (eirˆnˆ soi). "Pax tibi" like the Jewish greeting "shal“m" (Lu 10:5; 24:36; Joh 20:19,21).
{The friends} (hoi philoi). Those in Ephesus.
{By name} (kat' onoma). John knew the friends in the church (at Pergamum or wherever it was) as the good shepherd calls his sheep by name (Joh 10:3, the only other N.T. example of kat' onoma). The idiom is common in the papyri letters (Deissmann, "Light", etc., p. 193, note 21).

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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(3 John: Chapter 1)

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