October 21 2021
Today, Thursday October 21
Demetrius, A Good Man to Follow
3 John 1:12-14 Demetrius has a good testimony from all, and from the truth itself. And we also bear witness, and you know that our testimony is true. I had many things to write, but I do not wish to write to you with pen and ink; but I hope to see you shortly, and we shall speak face to face. Peace to you. Our friends greet you. Greet the friends by name.
We are introduced to three men by name in this little letter from John. John specifically wrote the letter to Gaius, who was a very godly man. Next John exposes an evil man by the name of Diotrephes, who was causing contention and strife in the church. He finishes the letter by pointing out another good and godly man named Demetrius.
In verse 11, John encouraged to believers in the church to “imitate” or to follow those who are good rather than those who do evil and are not of God. Then in verse 12 he mentions Demetrius. Demetrius was that kind of a Christian. John warned his readers not to imitate Diotrephes. And John seems to be saying, "If you want to imitate an example, then follow Demetrius!"
But is it right for us to imitate human leaders? Yes, if they in turn are imitating Jesus Christ. "Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an example" (Philippians 3:17). "Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ" (1 Corinthians 11:1). You and I cannot see God, but we can see God at work in the lives of His children. The godly life and dedicated service of another believer is always an encouragement and a stimulus to me. By our good example, we can "consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works" (Hebrews 10:24).
Demetrius was a man worth imitating because he had a "good report" (witness) from the church fellowship. All the members knew him, loved him, and thanked God for his consistent life and ministry. While it is a dangerous thing when "all men shall speak well of you" (Luke 6:26), it is a wonderful thing when all the believers in a local church can agree to commend your life and testimony. If all men, saved and lost, good and evil, speak well of us, it may mean that we are compromising and masquerading.
But Demetrius not only had a good witness from the believers in the church, he also had a good witness from the Word (truth) itself. Like Gaius, Demetrius walked in the truth and obeyed the Word of God. This does not mean that either of these men was perfect, but it does mean that they were consistent in their lives, seeking to honor the Lord.
Both the church and the Word bore witness to Demetrius' Christian life, and so did the Apostle John himself. (This meant that Demetrius would be in trouble with Diotrephes!) The beloved apostle knew firsthand that Demetrius was a man of God, and John was not ashamed to confess it.
Friend, I trust that you have a good example like Demetrius in your fellowship of believers that you can learn from and follow! And I also pray that you are someone that also has a good witness and testimony from those who know you best!