People's New Testament
The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in the truth; and not I only, but also all they that have known the truth;
1:1 SUMMARY OF II JOHN: The Address to an Elect Woman and Her Family. The Commandment of Love. Antichrists. Godspeed Not to Be Given to These Opposers. Greetings.
The elder. John, unlike Peter and Paul, nowhere in his writings speaks of himself as an apostle. Peter also speaks of himself as an elder. John probably uses the term here, not officially, but in reference to his great age, as the only survivor of the apostles, and perhaps then the only personal disciple of the Lord living.
Unto the elect lady. The term is Kyria in the Greek, a term which we know to have been a female proper name. Hence many of the best commentators from the time of Athanasius have held that this is the name of the sister. If not a proper name Kyria would be the feminine form of Kurios (Lord), the term applied to Christ, a worldly title unaccountable in the church, which does not recognize artificial distinctions of rank. To avoid this difficulty some have held that by Kyria the church is meant. It is better to regard the term a proper name.
Whom I love. That is, the mother and her children.
For the truth's sake, which dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever.
1:2 For the truth's sake. Those who love in truth, love for the truth's sake.
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.
1:3 Grace be with you, mercy. and peace. The usual benediction of the saints.
The Lord Jesus Christ. The Revised Version omits Lord, a word which occurs nowhere else in John's Epistles.
I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father.
1:4 I rejoiced greatly. Because he had found her children walking in the truth, by keeping the commandment of the Father.
A commandment from the Father. The commandment referred to, the one which sums up all, is love.
And now I beseech thee, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto thee, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another.
1:5 And now I beseech thee, lady. Kyria in Greek. If lady at all, it would mean your ladyship. See PNT 2Jo 1:1.
Not as though I wrote a new commandment. Love embraces all. Compare and see PNT 1Jo 2:7.
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.
1:6 And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. Keeping the commandments is the demonstration of love. Compare 1Jo 5:3 and Joh 14:15,23.
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.
1:7 For many deceivers are entered into the world. See notes on 1Jo 2:18 2:22-24 4:1.
An antichrist. Opposed to Christ.
Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward.
1:8 Look to yourselves. Let not these deceivers lead you astray.
A full reward. Belonging to all saints who continue to abide in Christ.
Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
1:9 Whoever transgresseth. He that lives a life of transgression cannot abide in Christ.
Abideth in the doctrine. The teaching, the Gospel.
If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:
1:10 If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine. That of Christ. If he be a deceiver, an opposer of Christ, one who denies that Jesus Christ came in the flesh.
Receive him not into your house. Do not recognize him as a brother and extend to him a brotherly welcome. He is to be fellowshipped.
Neither bid him God speed. Give him no encouragement in his work of destruction. To give him greetings is to wish for his success.
For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
1:11 For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. He that gives him these prayerful greetings and encouragement becomes a partaker, to that extent, in his evil deeds.
Having many things to write unto you, I would not write with paper and ink: but I trust to come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be full.
1:12 Having many things to write unto you. Though many more things occurred that he wished to write about, he hopes soon to see her and speak face to face.
The children of thy elect sister greet thee. Amen.
1:13 The children of thy elect sister. It is usually supposed that this refers to a sister in the flesh, also one of the elect, whose children, probably grown up and Christians, were at that time with John.