“Demetrius has a good testimony from all, and from the truth itself. And we also bear witness, and you know that our testimony is true.”
John now turns to the last of the three personalities that he deals with in 3rd John – Demetrius. John says in effect, “Extend hospitality to Demetrius as a member of my team because he is a man of integrity.”
John gives a threefold tribute to Demetrius:
- A good testimony among all
- Truth spoke on his behalf
- The elder John speaks well of him
Demetrius has a good testimony from all,
John now commends Demetrius. “Demetrius,” a common name in the first century, means belonging to Demeter [the goddess of agriculture]. Demetrius probably had a pagan background. He is not the Demetrius of Acts 19:24. He may have been the leader of the itinerant evangelists sent from John.
In any case, Demetrius held a good testimony to “all.” His testimony was so extensive that it was commonly reported among all those who knew him. His integrity made his reputation. His character stood the test of many people.
Our character is our commendation.
There is a danger if all men speak well of us because that may indicate that we are without conviction. Yet it is another thing if people speak well of our integrity and disagree with our viewpoints. It is our stand on integrity that makes a good testimony. “His viewpoint is wrong but he is a good man.”
When conduct matches our profession we are deemed a person of integrity. We are more than our reputation. Our reputation is what others deem us to be. Our character is what we are. Our character commends us to others.