Exploring the Book of Galatians – Chapter 6

Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.If anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry his own load.

Anyone who receives instruction in the world must share all good things with his instructor.

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

Galatians 6:1-5

We have arrived at the end of Galatians, my friends! I pray that as we’ve journeyed through this book, God has revealed Himself to you.

As we’ve learned, the Galatians were navigating what life in Christ looked like, while resisting the former system of dos and don’ts. They had been taught by the Judiazers to live to the letter of the law. But Paul was challenging them to operate as a free people, not tied to a checklist hoping to gain them righteousness and holiness.

As we begin reading chapter 6, we see Paul challenging the Galatians on what to do for each other, what to guard themselves against and why.

What are the commands that Paul is giving them?

  • Restore someone caught in sin.
  • Carry each other’s burdens.
  • Share all good things you have been given.

From our perspective, these seem like pretty straightforward commands. But Paul’s includes some warnings interspersed in these commands.

  • Watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.
  • Test your own actions
  • Take pride in yourself without comparing to someone else
  • Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked
  • Do not become weary in doing good

Paul’s warnings come to the posture and attitude of our heart. As we know from looking back on the Jewish history, especially in Jesus’ day, the Pharisees were excellent at following the law. They were superior at calling out the sins of others. They were proficient at sharing the word of God with others.

But what they lacked was the in the area of the heart, which Jesus taught was what really mattered at the end of the day. Good deeds are great, but without the heart of love and true care, the deeds fall flat.

If I speak in the tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

1 Corinthians 13:1-3

We can possess great gifts of God and do amazing things in His name, but if the outpouring is not from a place of love and a heart attitude of true awareness of who we were before God rescued us, it is all for naught.

 

I’m so guilty of doing good, but not having my heart operating with the right attitude. It really goes back to believing and living led by the miracle of the Gospel. We were all icky sinners at one time. God rescued us by His grace, mercy and amazing love. Now are we living like redeemed sinners or self-righteous pigs? Are we living based on how we can show the love of Christ to others through our actions or are we operating based on what we can get out of it?

Is our life reflecting a “He” or a “me” attitude of the heart?

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As Galatians 6:8 says: “The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”

Friends, even if we are doing good, we can be motived to do so out of our sinful nature. That is why Paul challenges us to test our own actions, be aware of who we are and not compare ourselves with other. It is very easy to become weary of doing good when we feel the outcome should be for our own selfish gain.

Reflection Questions:

  • Are you guilty of doing good while operating out of a sinful attitude?
  • Does this passage challenge your heart motives in relation to anything you are currently doing?
  • Are you experiencing weariness in doing good?

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