Imatges de pàgina
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them kindness, supposing them to be the servants of Christ, ver. 7. He therefore desired them to be on their guard against such teachers, for this among other reasons, that if they should be drawn away by them, he would lose the reward which he expected for his having, not only faithfully, but successfully, taught them the true doctrine of the gospel: For he wished that his reward might be complete, through their continuing in the belief and practice of the truth, ver. 8.-Moreover he told them, that the teacher, who doth not abide in the true doctrine concerning Christ, doth not acknowledge the truth of God's testimony concerning his Son. But the teacher who continueth to hold that doctrine, acknowledges the Son's testimony concerning himself, as well as the Father's, ver. 9.-Wherefore, if any teacher came to them, and did not bring the true doctrine concerning Christ, he forbade them to receive him into their house; or so much as to give him the common salutation or wish of health, ver. 10. Because the person who gives any encouragement to false teachers, though it be done inconsiderately, is in some sort accessary to the mischiefs which his pernicious doctrine may occasion, ver. 11.-He then told them, that he had many other things to say to them concerning these impostors, but he would not commit them to writing, because he hoped to come soon and converse with them personally, in a more free manner than he could do by letter, that their mutual joy might be complete, ver. 12.—And so concluded, with giving this lady the salutation of the children of her sister, to whom likewise he gives the appellation of elect, on account of the excellence of her character, ver. 13.

NEW TRANSLATION.

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VER. 1 The elder' to the elect lady and her children, 3 whom I love sincerely. 5 And not I only, but all also who know the truth.

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COMMENTARY.

VER. I the aged apostle of Christ to the excellent lady and her children, whom I love in truth, and not I only, but all also who know the true doctrine of the gospel, love her and her children sincerely.

but, as Estius observes, because she was distinguished by her birth and opulence; and to shew his respect for her on account of her beneficence to the poor, and to strangers. See ver. 13. note. and Pref. Sect. 2.

2 For the truth's sake

shall be with us for ever:

Δια την αληθειαν την which dwelleth in us, and μενουσαν εν ημιν, και μεθ' ἡμων εςαι εις τον αιώνα· 3 Εςαι μεθ” ὑμων χαρις, ελεος, ειρηνη παρα Θεου πατρος και παρα Κυρίου Ιησου Χριςου του ίδιου του waτρος, εν αληθεια και αγαπῃ.

3 Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from

the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.

4 Εχαρην λιαν ὅτι εὑρη

χα εκ των τεχνων σου πε

4 I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we

have received a command- θως εντολην έλαβομεν παρα ριπατούντας εν αληθεια, κα

ment from the Father.

του πατρος.

3. And her children. There is no mention made by the apostle of this lady's husband, either because he was dead, or because he was not a Christian.

4. IVhom I love. The pronoun ους though the antecedents κυρια and renvo be, the one in the feminine gender and the other in the masculine, is put in the masculine, because according to the usage of the Greek language the masculine gender comprehends both the masculine and the feminine. See Ess. iv. 60.

5. Sincerely. The sincerity and purity of his love to thiis lady, the apostle shewed on the present occasion, by his earnestness to guard her and her children against being deceived by the false teachers, who were then going about among the disciples of Christ. See ver. 7.-If εν αλήθεια is translated, in truth, John's meaning may be, whom I love on account of their adherence to the true doctrine of the gospel. Accordingly, he adds, And not I only, but all also who know the truth.

Ver. 2.—1. Through the truth. As the apostle is here explaining the principle from which his love to this lady and her children proceeded, I have translated the preposition dia by the word through, to mark that principle: His love to these excellent persons proceeded from the influence, which the true doctrine of the gospel had on his mind, to make him love all the real disciples of Christ.

2. And shall be with us for ever. John mentioned the continuance of the Christian religion in the world for ever, as a proof of its excellence, and of God's care to support it, notwithstanding the attempts of infidels to destroy it. For, these considerations must have been a great encouragement to all in the first age, who had received the gospel, to maintain it, although by so doing they exposed themselves to much persecution.

2 Aia) WE LOVE YOU through the truth which abideth (ev, 172.) among us, and shall be with us for ever. 2

3 Grace, mercy, AND peace, be with you from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ the Son of the Father, (v, 162.) with truth and love.1

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I rejoiced greatly (ori, 259.) when I found SOME of thy children1 walking in truth, as we received commandment from the Father.

2 This love I and all who know the truth, bear to you through the influence of the gospel which abideth among us, and shall be continued with us to the end of the world.

3 Grace, mercy and peace, (1501) the future for the imperative, Ess. iv. 13.) be with you, from God the Father of all, and from Jesus Christ the Son of the Father, together with the possession of truth, and of love to God and to man.

4 I rejoiced greatly when I found some of thy children, with whom I conversed lately, holding the doctrines and observing the precepts of the gospel, as these were preached by us, according to the commandment which we received from the Father.

Ver. 3.-1. And from Jesus Christ the Son of the Father, with truth and I love. Whitby, supposing the clause, & annduḍ nas agawy, to be an Hebraism, connects it with the Son of the Father, and translates the passage thus: From Jesus Christ the true and beloved Son of the Father. But others construe the passage in this manner: Grace, mercy, and peace, with truth and love, be with you from God the Father, and from Jesus Christ the Son of the Father. This construction I think should be followed.

Ver. 4.-1. I rejoiced greatly when I found some of thy children. So iugnи a SX TWY TEXVOY σ signifies. From this expression Estius inferred, that some of this lady's children were not Christians. But I rather suppose with Grotius, that John speaks of such of her children as in the course of their affairs had come to the place where he was; and that having conversed with them, he had found them sound, both in the faith and in the practice of the gospel.-After they returned home, the apostle inscribed this letter to them, as well as to their mother, and by the commendation which he bestowed on them in it, he no doubt encouraged them much to persevere in the truth.

2. Walking in truth. As walking denotes in scripture the course of a man's behaviour, Ess. iv. 59. walking in truth, may signify, not only that these young persons maintained the true doctrine of the gospel concerning the person of Christ, ver. 7. but that their conversation was in all respects suitable to the gospel.-In this joy, the apostle manifested the disposition of a faithful minister of Christ: for such derive their greatest happiness from the faith and holiness of their disciples. John spake in the same manner

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5 And now I beseech

5 Και νυν ερωτω σε, κυρία,

wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another.

thee, lady, not as though I ουχ ὡς εντολην γραφων σοι καινην, αλλα ην ειχομεν απ' aρxns, ἵνα αγαπωμεν αλληλους.

6 And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.

7. For many deceivers are entered into the world, 'who confess not that Jesus

Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

πη,

6 Και αύτη εςιν ἡ αγὰἱνα περιπατῶμεν κατα τας εντολας αυτου. Αὕτη εξιν ἡ εντολή, καθως ηκουσατε απ' αρχής, ίνα εν αυτη περιπατητε.

7 Ότι πολλοι πλανοι εισηλθον εις τον κόσμον, οἱ μη ὁμολογοῦντες Ιησουν Χριςον ερχομενον εν σαρκι. έτος εςιν ὁ πλανος και ὁ αντιχριςος.

concerning Caius. 3 Epist. ver. 3. And Paul concerning his converts, Philip. iv. 1. 1 Thess. iii. 9.

Ver. 5.-1. Now I beseech thee lady. This sort of address suiteth a particular person, better than a whole church consisting of many individuals, to which, in the opinion of some, this letter was directed. See Pref. Sect. 2.

2. Not as writing to thee a new commandment. The apostle doth not speak of a new commandment, in the sense in which our Lord used that phrase, when he said to his disciples, John viii. 34. A new commandment I give to you, that ye love one another : : as I have loved you that ye also love one another. See 1 John ii. 8. note 1. But his meaning is, either, that the commandment to love one another which he gave to this lady, was not a commandment which had never been delivered to the church before; or, that it was not a commandment peculiar to the gospel. The first of these I take to be the apostle's meaning; as he tells this lady, that the disciples of Christ had had this commandment delivered to them from the beginning.

3. But that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another. In inculcating this commandment so frequently and so earnestly in all his writings, John shewed himself, not only a faithful apostle of Christ, but a per. son of an excellent heart. His own breast being full of love to mankind, he wished to promote that amiable disposition in all the disciples of Jesus. See the conclusion, at the end of this epistle.

5 And now I beseech thee, lady,1 not as writing to thee a new commandment, 2 but that which we had from the beginning, that we love

one another. 3

6 And this is the love, that we walk according to his commandments. This is the commandment,2 even as ye have heard from the beginning, that ye may walk in it.3

7 ('07, 256.) For many deceivers are entered into the world, who do not confess Jesus Christ did come1 in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist.2

5 And now I beseech thee, lady, not as writing to thee a new commandment; commandment which thou never heardst before; but that commandment which we apostles had from our Master from the be ginning, and which we have all along preached, that we love one another.

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Moreover this is the love of God, that we walk according to his commandments, (1 John v. 3.) This is the great commandment of God, that ye believe in him whom he hath sent, (John vi. 29.) even as ye have heard from the beginning, in order that ye may constantly obey it. See 1 John ii. 5. note 1.

7 I put you in mind of God's commandment to believe on Jesus Christ, whom God sent into the world in the flesh, because many deceivers are entered into the world, who do not confess that Jesus Christ did come in the flesh, and who refuse to obey him. Every teacher of this sort, is the false prophet and the antichrist, foretold by our Lord to

come.

Ver. 6.-1. This is the love, that we walk according to his commandments. Most commentators think John is here describing the love mentioned in the preceding verse, namely the love which Christians owe to each other. But, since he tells us that the love of which he now speaketh, consists in the keeping of God's commandments, he must mean the love of God: for he delivers the same sentiment, 1 John v. 3. This is the love of God, that we keep his commandments.

2. This is the commandment; that is, the commandment by way of eminence. Wherefore, though the apostle doth not tell us what this commandment is, yet by calling it the commandment, he certainly directeth us to God's great commandment to obey his beloved Son Jesus Christ, whom he sent into the world made flesh, to save sinners. To this interpretation, the reason assigned by the apostle in the next verse, for putting the disciples in

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