Welcome back, we are heading into the last chapter of Galatians! Paul continues to give instructions to the Galatians on how they should act. Let’s dive right in.
1 Brothers, if someone is caught in any wrongdoing, you who are spiritual should restore such a person with a gentle spirit, watching out for yourselves so you also won’t be tempted. 2 Carry one another’s burdens; in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone considers himself to be something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But each person should examine his own work, and then he will have a reason for boasting in himself alone, and not in respect to someone else. 5 For each person will have to carry his own load.
After telling them to be good Paul goes to the end important point. If you see your brother sin you are to correct them. You are to do this with grace and gentleness be I alert so that you will not be tempted by the sin. We are to care for our brothers and sisters and help them carry their burdens. On the flip side Paul points out that if someone thinks they are a Christian then they should look at their works to see if they confirm it. Then Paul reminds us we should only look at ourselves as we know all the things we do and we should avoid comparing ourselves to our neighbor and instead compare ourselves to God’s standards.
6 The one who is taught the message must share all his good things with the teacher. 7 Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked. For whatever a man sows he will also reap, 8 because the one who sows to his flesh will reap corruption from the flesh, but the one who sows to the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit. 9 So we must not get tired of doing good, for we will reap at the proper time if we don’t give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, we must work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith.
Paul moves on to comment that those who teach the gospel are entitled to payment. After this Paul reminds them that what they give is what they will get because God knows what they do. Therefore, we must not grow tired of doing good works but continue knowing it is for God and that we will spend eternity with Him. Do not give up because as you invest in others the time will come when your works in the Spirit will bring others to God. Since we know this we must work for the good of all.
11 Look at what large letters I use as I write to you in my own handwriting. 12 Those who want to make a good impression in the flesh are the ones who would compel you to be circumcised—but only to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13 For even the circumcised don’t keep the law themselves; however, they want you to be circumcised in order to boast about your flesh. 14 But as for me, I will never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. The world has been crucified to me through the cross, and I to the world. 15 For both circumcision and uncircumcision mean nothing; what matters instead is a new creation. 16 May peace come to all those who follow this standard, and mercy to the Israel of God! 17 From now on, let no one cause me trouble, because I bear on my body scars for the cause of Jesus. 18 Brothers, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.
Paul then uses the next verse to let people know it is truly from him and not a false teacher Iain his name. These false teachers are the ones tell I them to be circumcised. Paul knows they do this to avoid persecution and not for the good of God’s church. They cannot keep the law themselves but want the gentiles circumcised so they can boast about it. But Paul will boast only in God as should we all. Everything is made nothing in light of the cross. Circumcision means nothing as God brings in His new creation. He then prays for peace to all who follow Jesus and prays God will have mercy on Israel. He then closes the letter by telling them not to let anyone trouble them and to live in the Grace of God.
So What Do I Do With This Now?
All the information is great, but what do I do with it now?
1 If we see a brother or sister in Christ in sin we are commanded by God to confront them. We need to do so in grace and humility knowing that we too are open to temptation.
2 Do not compare yourself to others, but look at your own works and the standards of Christ.
3 Give to teachers and preachers as they are entitled to it.
4 Continue to do good works, do not give up on them as God will bring them to completion and use them in His time, and He will reward you.
5 Do not be concerned about impressing people, but crucify everything and follow God
Well thanks for sticking with me. We have made it through yet another book of the Bible and hopefully have learned and applied something as we went. Join me next week as we start a new book!