Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of III John Chapter 1
Metaphysically Interpreting III John 1:1
Metaphysically Interpreting III John 1:2-8
1:2Beloved, I pray that in all things thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. 1:3For I rejoiced greatly, when brethren came and bare witness unto thy truth, even as thou walkest in truth. 1:4Greater joy have I none than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth. 1:5Beloved, thou doest a faithful work in whatsoever thou doest toward them that are brethren and strangers withal; 1:6who bare witness to thy love before the church: whom thou wilt do well to set forward on their journey worthily of God: 1:7because that for the sake of the Name they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles. 1:8We therefore ought to welcome such, that we may be fellow-workers for the truth.
Metaphysically Interpreting III John 1:9-12
1:9I wrote somewhat unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. 1:10Therefore, if I come, I will bring to remembrance his works which he doeth, prating against us with wicked words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and them that would he forbiddeth and casteth them out of the church. 1:11Beloved, imitate not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: he that doeth evil hath not seen God. 1:12Demetrius hath the witness of all men, and of the truth itself: yea, we also bear witness: and thou knowest that our witness is true.
Metaphysically Interpreting III John 1:13-15
1:13I had many things to write unto thee, but I am unwilling to write them to thee with ink and pen: 1:14but I hope shortly to see thee, and we shall speak face to face. Peace be unto thee. The friends salute thee. Salute the friends by name.
Sunday, September 29, 1935: III John 1:1-14
Show how spiritual love benefits in a practical sense the one who expresses it. Love perceives that the well-rounded expression of life is a sound mind in a sound body, to which all things needful are added under divine law. “Beloved, I pray that in all things thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.”
Explain the expression “walking in the truth.” To live by principle in thought, word, and act is to walk in Truth. Single-mindedness is another word that defines this “term.”
In what way is a man's treatment of strangers a measure of the presence of the Christ Spirit in him? The man who helps strangers without expectation of reward and without expectation of seeing them again has a better chance to express the Christ Spirit than the one who extends help to those well known to him.
John praises those followers of the Christ who “went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles.” Are there Gentiles in our lives from whom love enables us to take nothing? Spiritual love shows us that accident, chance, and events classed as happenings are “Gentiles,” and if we are faithful to Principle, we do not allow any of these things to operate as causes in our life.
What is the meaning of Diotrephes, and of what is the name a symbol? Diotrephes (“trained by Zeus”) is a symbol of personal exaltation active in consciousness. This state of mind keeps man from entering spiritual consciousness.
Is imitation advisable for man? Imitation of the good is best for those who have not yet developed power to form original conceptions of the good and the initiative to execute them. Paul says, “I could not discuss things with you, my brothers, as spiritual persons; I had to address you ... as mere babes in Christ” (Moffatt).
Who is our model while we remain babes in understanding of spiritual truth? Jesus Christ is our model and great example. Through following Him we keep the way.
To what does keeping the Way lead us? Faithful following of the Way develops in us power to create good from the Christ substance, or to act from Principle on original impulses.
How is substance symbolized in this lesson? Demetrius (“belonging to Demeter,” “grain”) symbolizes substance. “Demetrius hath the witness of all men, and of truth itself.”
June 17, 1943: III John 1:5-12
Can our treatment of strangers be applied individually? To the orthodox believers health and prosperity appear to be strangers, that is, outside the bounds of divine law. In Truth they are under law and are part of everyone’s heritage in Divine Mind.
What does the name Diotrephes mean, and what does Diotrephes represent? It means “trained by Zeus,” and Diotrephes represents personal exaltation active in consciousness. This state of mind causes a man to repudiate spiritual love, which he cannot understand while he is ruled by personality.
Why should we “imitate” that which is good? Jesus said that “none is good save one, even God.” Until we are moved by the Spirit within us to original action, we cannot do better than take Jesus Christ as our model and do good as He did and as He taught others to do.
How could Demetrius (belonging to Demeter; grain) have “the witness of all men, and of the truth itself”? Demetrius represents substance, which is universal. Because it is universal all men make it manifest to the extent that they think in accordance with Truth.
Sunday, December 7, 1947: III John 1:1-14
How does “love in truth,” Christian love, differ from human love as we know it? Christian love is divine love in the heart of man, expressed in love of all that is good, right, and true, as well as in love of all people. He who loves in accordance with Truth sees the ideal side of everyone with whom he comes in contact. To see as God sees is to love as God loves, without stint or reservation. Human love is personal rather than universal in its scope.
What apostle represents love in this lesson? The apostle John.
Does Christian love lead us to take thought for the health and prosperity of other persons? Yes. Christian love leads us to see another person as perfect in health and blessed with plenty as we ourselves are.
When do we walk in Truth? When we express Truth, by keeping our actions consistent with our understanding of Truth in our daily life.
What reveals to us the springs of action in a man's character? A man’s readiness and ability to act according to Principle, according to the best light that he has.
By what is a person recognized as having a character founded on Principle? By his conduct and speech. Actions as well as words stem from thought.
Does all conduct spring from pure motives, from motives untinged with selfishness? No. Conduct may spring from a desire to impress others or to mislead them; as words may spring from vanity or a desire to mislead. Those who make the quest of Truth their aim learn to recognize the true and reject the false word or act.
How can the treatment of strangers be made an inner test? When we are conscious of our indwelling Christ and let His love direct our actions, we make no distinction between our treatment of strangers and our treatment of friends. To us they are all one in Christ Jesus.
Are accident and chance accounted for in the Christ consciousness? No. To the loyal student of Truth accident and chance do not exist. All things are under law, and nothing “happens” outside the law.
Transcribed by Lloyd Kinder on 12-16-2013