1#1] Beloved Gaius: a frequent form of address for fellow Christians in New Testament epistolary literature.The Presbyter to the beloved Gaius whom I love in truth.#1] 2 Jn 1.
2Beloved, I hope you are prospering in every respect and are in good health, just as your soul is prospering. 3I rejoiced greatly when some of the brothers#3] The brothers: in this letter, the term may refer to Christians who have been missionaries and received hospitality from Gaius (3 Jn 5–6). Walk in the truth: the common Johannine term to describe Christian living; this description presents Gaius as following the teachings of the Presbyter in contrast to Diotrephes. came and testified to how truly you walk in the truth.#3] 5; Gal 6:10; 2 Jn 4. 4Nothing gives me greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.#4] 1 Thes 2:11–12; 1 Tm 1:2; 2 Tm 1:2; 1 Jn 2:1; 2 Jn 4.
5Beloved, you are faithful in all you do#5] You are faithful in all you do: Gaius’s aid to the missionaries is a manifestation of his true Christian faith. for the brothers, especially for strangers;#5] Rom 12:13; Gal 6:10; Heb 13:2. 6they have testified to your love before the church.#6] Acts 15:3; Col 1:10; 1 Thes 2:12. Please help them in a way worthy of God to continue their journey.#6] Help them
to continue their journey: the Presbyter asks Gaius not only to continue to welcome the missionaries to his community but also to equip them for further travels. 7For they have set out for the sake of the Name#7] The Name: of Jesus Christ (cf. Acts 5:41; 1 Jn 2:12; 3:23; 5:13). Accepting nothing: not expecting support from the pagans to whom they preach the gospel, so that they will not be considered as beggars; they required support from other Christians; cf. Paul’s complaints to the Corinthians (1 Cor 9:3–12). and are accepting nothing from the pagans. 8Therefore, we ought to support such persons, so that we may be co-workers in the truth.
9I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to dominate,#9] Who loves to dominate: the Presbyter does not deny Diotrephes’ place as leader but indicates that his ambition may have caused him to disregard his letter and his influence. does not acknowledge us. 10Therefore, if I come,#10] If I come: the Presbyter may visit the community to challenge the actions of Diotrephes toward himself and the missionaries. Will not receive the brothers: Diotrephes may have been critical of the teachings of the Presbyter and sought to maintain doctrinal purity; cf. 1 Jn 2:19 and 2 Jn 10–11. I will draw attention to what he is doing, spreading evil nonsense about us. And not content with that, he will not receive the brothers, hindering those who wish to do so and expelling them from the church.
11Beloved, do not imitate evil#11] Do not imitate evil: Gaius should not be influenced by the behavior of Diotrephes. but imitate good. Whoever does what is good is of God; whoever does what is evil has never seen God.#11] 1 Jn 2:29; 3:6, 10. 12Demetrius#12] Demetrius: because of the fear of false teachers, Demetrius, perhaps the bearer of the letter, is provided with a recommendation from the Presbyter; cf. 2 Cor 3:1; Rom 16:1. Even from the truth itself: this refers probably to the manner of Demetrius’s life that testifies to his true belief; cf. Gaius above (3 Jn 3). receives a good report from all, even from the truth itself. We give our testimonial as well, and you know our testimony is true.#12] Jn 19:35; 21:24; 1 Tm 3:7.
13I have much to write to you, but I do not wish to write with pen and ink.#13] 2 Jn 12. 14Instead, I hope to see you soon, when we can talk face to face. 15Peace be with you. The friends greet you; greet the friends#15] Friends: although a Johannine term for Christians (Jn 15:15), the word here may refer to those in the community loyal to the Presbyter and to Gaius. there each by name.#15] Jn 20:19, 21, 26; Eph 6:23; 1 Pt 5:14.