12 January 2016

Diotrephean Self-Centeredness

I have written something to the church, but Diotrephes, who likes to put himself first, does not acknowledge our authority. So if I come, I will bring up what he is doing, talking wicked nonsense against us. And not content with that, he refuses to welcome the brothers, and also stops those who want to and puts them out of the church.- 3 John 9-10

At 15 verses, 3 John is one of the shortest books of the Bible. Written to Gaius, by John, it is pregnant with pastoral wisdom. Midway through, John wrote about Diotrephes, whom context would suggest was a part of the early Christian church, though we know nothing else about him apart from these two verses. 

What resounds about Diotrephes is that he was self-centered, presumably proud, arrogant, and unteachable. We can surmise that he lacks humility, patience, and other-centeredness.

Those words sting.  In part what makes them sting is that I can be Diotrephes. I do like to put myself first. Many of us do, but Diotrephean self-centeredness is the antithesis of the gospel and Christian maturity. 

May we grow in other-centeredness. 

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