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Bible Commentaries

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament
3 John 1

 

 

Verse 1

3 John 1:1. πρεσβύτερος, The Elder) An appropriate title for a familiar Epistle, such as this, and the one that follows. And indeed the gravity of the argument, and the familiarity of the little Epistle, are wonderfully combined and adjusted. The parts of the Epistle are three.

I. THE INSCRIPTION, 3 John 1:1-3.

II. AN EXHORTATION to perseverance in true love and faith, 3 John 1:4-11.

III. THE CONCLUSION, 3 John 1:12-13.

ἐκλεκτ, elect) He calls her elect, from her spiritual condition: for that this name is appellative, is plain from the circumstance of its being attributed to her sister also, 3 John 1:13; and if it had been a proper name, it would have been ἐκλέκτη, from ἔκλεκτος. They were either widows, or women of piety beyond their husbands. But κυρία [answering to the Hebrew Martha.—V. g.], as in other places, so here, is a proper name, as the Pæcile of Heuman teaches, T. 2, Book iii. art. 13, and T. 3, Book i. art. 2. Nor can any one doubt it, unless he is ignorant of the style of the ancients, or does not bear it in mind. The appellative κυρία, a mistress, independently of the relation to her slaves, could scarcely be given to a queen at that time without exciting envy. Proper names were usually employed of old,


Verse 3

3 John 1:3. ἐχάρην, I rejoiced) This is enlarged upon in 3 John 1:4.— γ ρ, for) A healthy state of the soul is known by the works; and the prayers of the righteous further this state.— καθ ς, even as) is explanatory.— σ) thou; opposed to Diotrephes, 3 John 1:9.


Verse 4

3 John 1:4. τούτων) than these, joys.


Verse 5

3 John 1:5. πιστ ν ποιε ς, thou doest faithfully) thou doest something, which I readily promised myself and the brethren from you. Thus whatever harmonises.— ἐργάσ, thou shalt do) in the labour of love.— κα) and, that which is of the greatest consequence, to strangers in particular.


Verse 6

3 John 1:6. ἐνώπιον ἐκκλησίας, before the Church) These examples were publicly mentioned, for encouragement, [in a very familiar method.—V. g.]— καλ ς ποιήσεις, thou shalt do well) A characteristic [polite] form of exhortation. Thus it is used in the past and the present time, to express approbation: Thou hast spoken wellThou hast done well, etc., Luke 20:39; Acts 10:33; Mark 7:37; John 4:17; John 13:13; James 2:8; James 2:19; 2 Peter 1:19.— προπέμψας, bringing forward on their journey) with provision for the way, Titus 3:13. Continue to afford benefits even to the end.— ἀξίως το θεο, as is worthy of God) He, who honours such as are described in the following verse, honours God.


Verse 7

3 John 1:7. το ὀνόματος, the name) Understand, of God: Leviticus 24:11. Comp. James 2:7.—[ ἐξ λθον, they went forth) either as exiles, or as preachers of the Gospel.—V. g.]— μηδ ν, nothing) They waived that to which they were justly entitled; and either received no reward for their labour, or submitted to the spoiling of their goods.— ἀπ, from) Construct this with they went forth.


Verse 8

3 John 1:8. συνεργο, fellow-helpers) that we may assist the truth, so that it may not be hindered.


Verse 9

3 John 1:9. ἔγραψα, I wrote) concerning these things. That epistle is not extant.— τ ἐκκλησί, to the church) of that place from which they went forth: 3 John 1:7. Here is the anticipation of an objection: lest Caius should say, Why do they come to us?— φιλοπρωτεύων α τ ν, who wishes to be the first of them) If even then, during the life of the apostle, Diotrephes exalted himself, what was not the case afterwards?— ἡμ ς, us) who commend them, and those who are commended by us.


Verse 10

3 John 1:10. ἐὰν ἔλθω, if I shall come) 3 John 1:14.— ὑπομνήσω, I will remind him) A Metonymia of the antecedent for the consequent: that is, I will notice (punish), I will set a mark of censure upon, so that he may feel.— λόγοις πονηρο ς, with malicious words) by which he endeavours to excuse himself.— το ς βουλομένους, those that wish) that is, to receive us and them.— ἐκβάλλει, he casts out) a great amount of insolence.


Verse 11

3 John 1:11. τ κακ ν, that which is evil) in Diotrephes.— τ ἀγαθ ν, that which is good) in Demetrius.— ἐκ το θεο, from God) who is good.— ἔστιν, is) as born from Him.


Verse 12

3 John 1:12. δημητρί, Demetrius) He seems to have been a minister who was a pattern of hospitality.— ἡμε ς, we) I, and they who are with me.— δ) yet: although Demetrius is already supplied with many testimonies.— κα ο δατε, and ye know) for we do not deceive in anything.


Verse 14

3John 1:15. φίλους, friends) Compare John 15:15. A title seldom found in the New Testament, since it is absorbed by the greater one of brotherhood. Philosophers are mistaken in supposing that friendship is not prepared (formed) by faith.— κατʼ ὄνομα, by name) No less than if their names were written.(1)

 


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Bibliography Information
Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on 3 John 1:4". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/3-john-1.html. 1897.

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Friday, December 6th, 2019
the First Week of Advent
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