You Walk in the Truth
1 The elder [of the church addresses this letter] to the beloved and esteemed Gaius, whom I love in truth.
2 Beloved, I pray that in every way you may succeed and prosper and be in good health [physically], just as [I know] your soul prospers [spiritually]. 3 For I was greatly pleased when [some of the] brothers came [from time to time] and testified to your [faithfulness to the] truth [of the gospel message], that is, how you are walking in truth. 4 I have no greater joy than this, to hear that my [spiritual] children are living [their lives] in the truth.
5 Beloved, you are acting faithfully in what you are providing for the brothers, and especially when they are strangers; 6 and they have testified before the church of your love and friendship. You will do well to [assist them and] send them on their way in a manner worthy of God. 7 For these [traveling missionaries] went out for the sake of the Name [of Christ], accepting nothing [in the way of assistance] from the Gentiles. 8 So we ought to support such people [welcoming them as guests and providing for them], so that we may be fellow workers for the truth [that is, for the gospel message of salvation].
9 I wrote something to the church; but Diotrephes, who loves to put himself first, does not accept what we say and refuses to recognize my authority. 10 For this reason, if I come, I will call attention to what he is doing, unjustly accusing us with wicked words and unjustified charges. And not satisfied with this, he refuses to receive the [missionary] brothers himself, and also forbids those who want to [welcome them] and puts them out of the church.
11 Beloved, do not imitate what is evil, but [imitate] what is good. The one who practices good [exhibiting godly character, moral courage and personal integrity] is of God; the one who practices [or permits or tolerates] evil has not seen God [he has no personal experience with Him and does not know Him at all]. 12 Demetrius has received a good testimony and commendation from everyone—and from the truth [the standard of God’s word] itself; and we add our testimony and speak well of him, and you know that our testimony is true.
13 I had many things [to say when I began] to write to you, but I prefer not to put it down with pen (reed) and black (ink); 14 but I hope to see you soon, and we will speak face to face.
15 Peace be to you. The friends [here] greet you. Greet the friends [personally] by name.