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2 John 1:1

    2 John 1:1 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    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;

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    The elder to 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;

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in truth; and not I only, but also all they that know the truth;

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    I, a ruler in the church, send word to the noble sister who is of God's selection, and to her children, for whom I have true love; and not only I, but all who have knowledge of what is true;

    Webster's Revision

    The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in truth; and not I only, but also all they that know the truth;

    World English Bible

    The elder, to the chosen lady and her children, whom I love in truth; and not I only, but also all those who know the truth;

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    The elder unto the elect lady and her children, whom I love in truth; and not I only, but also all they that know the truth;

    Definitions for 2 John 1:1

    Elder - Older; greater in age.

    Clarke's Commentary on 2 John 1:1

    The elder - John the apostle, who was now a very old man, generally supposed to be about ninety, and therefore he uses the term ὁ πρεσβυτερος, presbyter or elder, not as the name of an office, but as designating his advanced age. He is allowed to have been the oldest of all the apostles, and to have been the only one who died a natural death.

    This title led some of the ancients to attribute this epistle to a person called John the Presbyter, a member of the Church at Ephesus; and not to John the apostle. But this is a groundless supposition.

    The elect lady - Εκλεκτῃ Κυρια· As Κυρια, kuria, may be the feminine of Κυριος, kurios, lord, therefore it may signify lady; and so several, both ancients and moderns, have understood it. But others have considered it the proper name of a woman, Kyria; and that this is a very ancient opinion is evident from the Peshito Syriac, the oldest version we have, which uses it as a proper name koureea, as does also the Arabic kooreea.

    Some have thought that Eclecta was the name of this matron, from the word εκλεκτη, which we translate elect, and which here signifies the same as excellent, eminent, honorable, or the like. Others think that a particular Church is intended, which some suppose to be the Church at Jerusalem, and that the elect sister, 2 John 1:13, means the Church at Ephesus; but these are conjectures which appear to me to have no good ground. I am satisfied that no metaphor is here intended; that the epistle was sent to some eminent Christian matron, not far from Ephesus, who was probably deaconess of the Church, who, it is likely, had a Church at her house, or at whose house the apostles and traveling evangelists frequently preached, and were entertained. This will appear more probable in the course of the notes.

    Whom I love in the truth - Whom I love as the Christian religion requires us to love one another.

    And not I only - She was well known in the Churches; many had witnessed or heard of her fidelity, and partook of her hospitality; so that she had a good report of all Christians in that quarter.

    Barnes' Notes on 2 John 1:1

    The elder - See the introduction, Section 1, (2,d).

    Unto the elect lady - The elect or chosen Kyria. See the introduction, Section 2. He addresses her as one chosen of God to salvation, in the use of a term often applied to Christians in the New Testament.

    And her children - The word here rendered "children" (τέκνοις teknois) would include in itself both sons and daughters, but since the apostle immediately uses a masculine pronoun, τοις tois it would seem more probable that sons only were intended. At all events, the use of such a pronoun proves that some at least of her children were sons. Of their number and character we have no information, except that (the notes at 2 John 1:4) a part of them were Christians.

    Whom I love in the truth - See the notes, John 3:18. The meaning here is, that he "truly" or "sincerely" loved them. The introduction of the article the here, which is not in the original, (ἐν ἀληθίᾳ en alēthia) somewhat obscures the sense, as if the meaning were that he loved them so far as they embraced the truth. The meaning however is, that he was sincerely attached to them. The word "whom" here, (οὓς hous,) embraces both the mother and her children, though the pronoun is in the masculine gender, in accordance with the usage of the Greek language. No mention is made of her husband, and it may thence be inferred that she was a widow. Had he been living, though he might not have been a Christian, it is to be presumed that some allusion would have been made to him as well as to the children, especially since there is reason to believe that only some of her children were pious. See the notes, 2 John 1:4.

    And not I only, but also all they that have known the truth - That is, all those Christians who had had an opportunity of knowing them, were sincerely attached to them. It would seem, from a subsequent part of the Epistle 2 John 1:10, that this female was of a hospitable character, and was accustomed to entertain at her house the professed friends of religion, especially religious teachers, and it is probable that she was the more extensively known from this fact. The commendation of the apostle here shows that it is possible that a family shall be extensively known as one of order, peace, and religion, so that all who know it or hear of it shall regard it with interest, respect, and love.

    Wesley's Notes on 2 John 1:1

    1:1 The elder - An appellation suited to a familiar letter, but upon a weighty subject. To the elect - That is, Christian. Kuria is undoubtedly a proper name, both here and in 2Jo 1:5; for it was not then usual to apply the title of lady to any but the Roman empress; neither would such a manner of speaking have been suitable to the simplicity and dignity of the apostle. Whom - Both her and her children. I love in the truth - With unfeigned and holy love.
    Book: 2 John