Praying God's blessing for one another
The elder: To my dear friend Gaius, whom I love in the truth. Dear friend, I pray that you are prospering in every way and are in good health, just as your whole life is going well. 3 John 1:1-2 CSB
This letter was probably written around the same time as 1 and 2 John addressed to Gaius, a friend of the apostle. The relationship between John and Gaius was one of love and trust. John twice mentions that he loves Gaius. The literal translation of the text says, “To Gaius the beloved, whom I love in truth.” Gaius is loved by God and loved by John because of the truth which Gaius professes. This brief remark apparently takes the place of a greeting. In distinction from other personal letters, this epistle lacks the familiar salutation grace, mercy and peace or its equivalent. The purpose of this letter was to praise Gauis and Demetrius for their continued support of missionaries and to rebuke Diotrephes who did the opposite. This letter, the shortest book in the Bible, is a very personal letter of John to his friends. We see in the opening verse, “the elder,” a typical address to identify one of the twelve disciples. Addressed to his “dear friend Gaius, whom I love in the truth.” This is a similar greeting in 2 John 1, loving another as a fellow believer who is committed to the truth. In verse 2 he voices a wish rather than an actual prayer. John adheres to the custom of his day and wishes the addressee health and prosperity. The wish is broad, for John includes everything. He cares for his friend and brother in Christ, praying that “you are prospering in every way and are in good health, just as your whole life is going well.” John is interested in the material and physical well-being of Gaius. He knows that Gaius is spiritually active, but John desires that also in material aspects Gaius may succeed. John cares for the physical and the spiritual needs of Gaius. During previous meetings with him and from reports about him, John knows that Gaius is prospering spiritually. John writes, “just as your whole life is going well.” That is, Gaius has made more spiritual than material progress—and that is commendable. The beauty of the church being united in Christ, believers are challenged to love one another as Christ has loved them all. John models this love with this letter. In the same way, if you are a believer, encourage and wish for one another to grow in the faith and that God will bless each one so that we can all be a blessing to one another.
Isaac De Guzman