Reading through The Bible - 3 JOHN

Some Books of the bible are very short and some are very long but this one is the 
  • shortest of them all by no. of words
  • joint shortest of them all by no. of chapters (5 books all have only 1)
  • second shortest of them all by no. of verses
you can find these comparisons in  The 10 Shortest Books

In fact it only takes 2 mins to read it according to Crossway and their lovely barchart


25th book of the NT 
64th book of the Bible

It starts with the reassurance that John prays for the elder Gaius
  in 3 John v 2 we read

"Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers."

What is it?

The Book of 3 JOHN is one of the EPISTLES in the New Testament which means it is a Letter.

How Long is it?

It only has 1 chapter.

When was it Written?

It was written between 95 & 90 AD

Who Wrote it?

John the beloved disciple of Jesus

The name of the letter tells us the writer.
Other letters in the bible are named to show who the recipients of the letters were specifically intended to be but these were letters written by John son of Zebedee and brother of James.
One of the three disciples who Jesus often took with him apart from the others. 

Who was it Written to?

It was written to Gaius as stated in verse 1
"To the beloved Gaius, whom I love in truth:"

What is it normally well-known for?

That John was happy the believers were walking in the Truth as seen in the fourth verse 

but also about concern about a false teacher and John wanted the people to continue to remember to differentiate between good & evil as verse 11 says

The Overview Bible  tells us the following

"An even shorter letter about Christian fellowship."  

Teach Sunday School  tells us the following

"John criticised a false teacher in this very short letter.  He even called him out by name."  


Why was it Written? 

It was written to encourage about love and truth and to warn about the false teaching that was coming into the church and specifically warn about a certain person.

The Overview Bible  tells us the following

"This letter repeats many themes from John’s first letter, and Second John reflects these themes as well. Third John shows us what happens when people follow sound teaching . . . and when they don’t:
  • When Christians walk in truth, joy abounds (3 Jn 4). When someone in the church rejects the truth, everyone hurts (3 Jn 19).
  • When Christians support one another, they share fellowship in the truth (3 Jn 8). When someone seeks his own power, the fellowship is at risk (3 Jn 9–10).

Overall, the three letters from John give us an idea of what the apostle thought was most important at the time: sound teaching, obedience to God, and brotherly love."

Teach Sunday School  tells us the following

"The letter shows us that even when the church was less than 50 years old, it had the same types of problems we have today with divisions and dishonesty."  

Which other books of the Bible is this linked to? 

John wrote three epistles of which this is the third which follows
 1st John and 2nd John  

other books would be

  • The Gospel of John (also written by John)
  • Revelation (also written by John)
  • Jude (also only one chapter long)
  • Philemon (also only one chapter long)
  • Obadiah (also only one chapter long)

  • How does it end?

    With the wish to visit in person in the 
    first half of verse 13

    and a farewell greeting in the 
    second half of verse 13

    "Peace to you. Our friends greet you. Greet the friends by name."

    The Overview Bible  gives us this

    Quick outline of 3 John

    1. Praise for walking in truth (1–4)
    2. Praise for loving the brethren (5–8)
    3. Caution regarding Diotrephes (9–12)
    4. Anticipation of a visit (13–15)