III. The Troublemaker (Vv.9–11)

Whatever position this Diotrephes held in the church, he had prevented one of John's letters from being read and had spoken maliciously against him. Possibly he was a sympathizer with the false teachers whom John opposed. He prohibited others from preaching (preferring to do it himself evidently, according to v. 9) and excommunicated those who were favorable to the traveling preachers. Here is a “church boss” par excellence! We can only guess how this man attained such a place of power, but John's condemnation of him is severe. To Gaius he says, “Do not imitate [him].”