It is an unfortunate truth that asking Jesus to be our Lord and Savior does not make us perfect. I’m not willing to state unequivocally that it is impossible for any of us to live without sin after we have been born again. But I have yet to meet any who have managed to do so.
Last week I focused on Galatians 5:13 – 25, and in that passage Paul explained that the Spirit and the flesh “are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please.” So sin, even for a Christian, should not come as much of a surprise.
How we deal with our own sin, and react to the sin of other believers is crucial. In Galatians 6:1 Paul says that “if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness.” That is not an easy thing to do, especially in today’s culture where, even among believers, to even hint that someone may be doing something that they ought not is to invite a world of grief. Yet, there it is. The key to doing this effectively is to do so “with a spirit of gentleness,” and in the context of a trusted relationship.
Paul goes on to warn us that we are not to think of ourselves as “something when he [we] are nothing,” for in so doing we deceive ourselves. We are not to compare our spiritual growth and walk and work with others, “but each one must examine his own work, and the he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another.”
We are not to say, or even think to ourselves, that we are more spiritual or better than another. We are only to measure where we are now against where we used to be and where we hope to eventually arrive.
This is all tied to the explanation of the fruit of the Spirit that Paul outlined in chapter 5, and he brings it back into that agricultural context with the image of sowing and reaping. We are not to lose heart or grow weary as we seek to sow goodness to all people, to exhibit love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. For when we sow seeds of that type we are assured that we will reap eternal life.
“So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”
This week during Midday Prayer Time, around 10:30 AM and 2:30 PM, I’ll be sharing from Galatians chapter 6.
Mon 05/14 Galatians 6:1 – 2
Tue 05/15 Galatians 6:3 – 4
Wed 05/16 Galatians 6:5 – 6
Thu 05/17 Galatians 6:7 – 8
Fri 05/18 Galatians 6:9 – 10
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