PROSPER in ALL things, but ‘WALK in TRUTH’: "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers. For I rejoiced greatly when brethren came and testified of the truth that is in you, just as you walk in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." (3 John 1:2-4)
In the above passage, Apostle John is wishing his beloved Gaius that his physical health might correspond to his spiritual vigor. Gaius was clearly a dear friend of Apostle John. His physical health and prosperity was as important to John as his spiritual health. So, John prays that the temporal prosperity and physical health of Gaius will be commensurate with his spiritual status. This prayer gives us a warrant for praying for the physical, the material, and the spiritual well-being of others; and also provides us with a model of intercession.
The reason for John’s prayer was because he had heard from others that Gaius’s lifestyle was consistent with the truth. Truth here refers to the ‘body of truth’ given to the church through the apostles and prophets, that is, according to God’s Word, the revelation of His truth. Gaius walked according to the God’s Word rather than the ways of the world. He could have been a disciple of John’s or simply a younger believer.
The importance of doctrinal integrity and truth is evident in John’s affirmation that nothing brought greater joy to him than to know that his spiritual children walk in truth. What a thrill it is to see our spiritual children going on for the Lord, from grace to grace. This emphasizes the importance of follow-up work in all our evangelistic endeavors.
We should not only hold the truth, but allow the truth to hold us. People would rather see a sermon than hear one. People could see the truth in Gaius because he loved it and walked in obedience to it, and that brought great joy to John. May every Christian parent can echo this and even make it a daily prayer!
"I rejoiced greatly that I have found some of your children walking in truth, as we received commandment from the Father." (2 John 1:4)