“Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.”
John calls Gaius “beloved” for the second time in two short verses.
I pray that you may prosper in all things
Prosperity here is mental health and general well being. Diotrephes gave Gaius a hard time so he needed encouragement.
and be in health,
John was concerned about the physical health of Gaius.
just as your soul prospers
Gaius was in good spiritual health. He walked with a clear conscience before the Lord. John’s hope for him is that his general well being would be as good as his spiritual well being, “I wish you a general prosperity that equates with your spiritual prosperity.”
A prosperous soul is a soul in right relation to the Lord.
The church needs more people with spiritual health. Many give little concern to the soul. If our physical heath corresponds to our spiritual health, many of us would be in bad shape physically. If our financial state were as bad as our spiritual state, we would be bankrupt.
There is some profit in giving concern to our physical well being (1 Ti 4:8) but there is much more benefit in spiritual prosperity. If some of us were as strong physically as we are spiritually, we would be bedridden.
Ps 106:15 “And He gave them their request,
But sent leanness into their soul.”
Ps 138:3 “In the day when I cried out, You answered me,
And made me bold with strength in my soul.”
What makes for a prosperous soul? A soul in right fellowship with the Lord. Incorporation of the principles of God’s soul food into our spiritual system strengthens our spirit. The soul that has a good dose of the Word is a prosperous soul.
Joshua 1:8 “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”