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the Week of Proper 21 / Ordinary 26
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Verse 1

Week Twelve: 6:1-10 Good Works Should Be Our Goal

6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

In this study I will be using the term confront in relation to this restoration process - there seems to be that form of let them know of their sin, but there is also the "what are we going to do about it" part.

Here we see one of the clearest expressions of church discipline that you can find, outside of the Matthew text which lays out the specific methods to be used. How much more clear might Paul have been? Yet, there are pastors and boards across the country that will not function in this capacity within their congregations. When it comes to trouble, leave it alone and it will go away, seems to be the mind set.

Yes, that action, or inaction as it really is, can work. Let that person’s sin go, and then someone else will get involved in it and another and another, and soon the church won’t notice that most of the congregation is living in sin.

Paul also addresses the issue in I and II Corinthians with the man that was involved in sin, removed from the assembly and then restored when his life was back to proper ways.

Remember this comment is still in the context of a letter to the Galatians where Paul mentioned that little nugget of truth that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. Spose these two are related? Well, Yaaaaa! As some would say.

Verse one is here so that the leavening process is stopped in its tracks. If you don’t there will be ramifications within the congregation as well as the person’s life. We owe it to our congregation and the individuals to root out sin as soon as it is known. Anything less is incompetence and slacking of duty.

Note first that "man" is a general word that can include the ladies as well. ANYONE overtaken in a fault is the clear idea of the verse.

It is of note that both times the word "tempted" is used it is in the passive voice, that is that the temptation snuck up on the person and hit them over the head. It was something that happened unexpectedly, without forethought. Something that just happened.

This is of note for two reasons. First, that the spiritual are to work closely with people in relation to their spiritual lives - keep them straight even when something comes out of nowhere and they get involved with it. Secondly, we ought to recognize that these things do happen, even to those that normally walk with God.

These short comings might include the sin that is related to something they did not know was sin. A new believer might well enter into activities that are not proper because they did not know that they were not proper. These sins might also include those things that creep up on us, like a sudden situation where your anger explodes. It might relate to situations where you are carried along with the crowd and they decide to take a turn down a wrong path and you just get into a mess.

Now, recognizing this does not give us license to let these situations happen, it gives us insight to be better prepared for such situations.

We need also to realize that the believer would not have been surprised by this sin had they not had their mind open to incorrect things. Sin is the action of the mind and without the mind in the wrong area of thought there most likely won’t be any action.

I will close the thoughts on this verse with a grand reminder from Barnes. "In the spirit of meekness. With a kind, forbearing, and forgiving spirit. Not with anger; not with a lordly and overbearing mind; not with a love of finding others in fault, and with a desire for inflicting the discipline of the church; not with a harsh and unforgiving temper; but with love, and gentleness, and humility, and patience, and with a readiness to forgive when wrong has been done. This is an essential qualification for restoring and recovering an offending brother. No man should attempt to rebuke or admonish another who cannot do it in the spirit of meekness; no man should engage in any way in the work of reform who has not such a temper of mind."

Verses 1-10


1. In 6:1 the one confronting is warned of being tempted. How does this tempting come to be in the person’s life? Is it seeing the person is enjoying their sin and actually getting away with the sin thus far, and the spiritual person becomes tempted to dabble in the same incorrect activity? Or, is it that the one that is not spiritual might have rationalizations that sound so good that the spiritual is tempted to buy into the falsehood?

I suspect both of these would be dangers. The term tempted has two ways of being used. In the usual thought of someone tempting you trying to get you to do something that you ought not. It is also used in a positive sense of trying something to see if you can do it. If you have never gone skydiving, you have no idea whether you could take that first step or not, so you might tempt yourself, or try it to see if you actually have the courage to step out into nothingness.

The warning may relate to Paul not wanting them to try some of these sins to see if they were up to the challenge or not, whether they could actually do it or not.

When we confront another we need to be sure we aren’t in the same boat as the one we would confront.

2. Again, in 6:1 we are told to do it in meekness. The meekness may extend both directions in the verse. Being meek in the confrontation and if we are meek, we might not think ourselves great enough to tempt ourselves with this sin.

I have only been confronted a time or two, and it was always from some of the most arrogant people I’ve met. Their confrontation was of little value, because they were loaded down with sins of their own, and their approach to me was that I was the sinner of sinners. Yes, I took some time and considered their accusations before the Lord, but took little extended thought to the situations.

3. Verse one through five is quite usable as individual verses, but they seem to be a unit. They seem to be one line of thought. If you know of a brother in sin, confront him, however when you are considering yourself, be sure to know that you will stand before God yourself, as will the brother.

Verse four may relate back to the word "tempted" in verse one. Also, the thought of thinking one self great when you aren’t may well relate to the idea of thinking you are spiritual when you are not and that you probably shouldn’t be confronting someone else that is not spiritual. Verse four may also relate to the meekness of verse one.

4. Verse six has been used to discuss paying pastors, but in the context it may well relate to some communication from the one confronted to the spiritual one that is confronting him. If you are taught in the word you need to communicate back - you must give a due response, rather than to blow the spiritual man off. Indeed, the term communicated has the idea of coming into fellowship with, or the idea of sharing or becoming a partner.

The verse may indicate that the confronted and the spiritual are to come to partnership to care for the sin of the sinner. To become a part of the cure. This would seem also, to be the reason for the warning - because you are in such a close partnership don’t allow the sin to taint your life.

You might find the word translated communicate of interest. It is the verb form of the term usually translated fellowship - koinonia - they are to share together in some manner.

5. In verse nine we are told that good will come if we "faint not" and in other passages the term "overcomer" is used. There is indication that continuing in hard times, suffering all that is sent, and the pressing on toward the mark is a desired attitude - that if we hang in there, good will come.

The question will probably come up, what if you don’t continue, or what if you don’t suffer, or you don’t press on? What will happen, will you be lost? Never will you be lost, but lost will be your reward might be the possibility, if not probability.

6. When I read verse three and its challenge not to think more highly of yourself than you ought, it struck me rather funny - all those detractors of mine over the years, all those negative comments about me, and all those tales behind my back, were sin to the one involved, yet good for me, because I tended toward beating myself down - taking upon myself the truth of what they said, without evaluating the validity. Maybe this was one way God saw to it that I did not value myself too highly.

I would guess the real sin of over estimating your own value would be the raising up of yourself toward God - an impossible task, yet isn’t that about what is at work in the back of our minds - trying to make ourselves look better to God. If not that, surely the problem is raising ourselves up above others.

7. Barnes takes a hard view on verse one and it is of note, because it is a view that many of the older men of God take toward sin. He suggests that the idea of being overcome relates to being caught off guard by some temptation and falling into sin. This, indeed, is the thought of the passage - something that just happens in a moment of temptation - a good reason to constantly check on who it is you are walking with, God or self.

Barnes goes on to say quite clearly that this needs to be the case, because no Christian would ever knowingly step off into sin. A Christian does not sin unless his temptation catches him off guard. In a sense this is true as true can be. If we are walking with God, we surely will not say "Hang on a sec Lord, I gotta go commit adultery - get back to ya!"

8. The spiritual one confronting, must be spiritual, he must also have the reputation of being spiritual, and he must have been spiritual for a time. If one in sin is confronted by someone of this stature, there will be serious contemplation before rejecting their words. On the other hand if someone that was drunk yesterday confronts a drunk today, the listening might not be too long, and the confrontation might well be quite short.

9. The whole of this passage pictures spiritual Christians, standing along side sinning Christians in an attempt to bring them out of their sin in a meek, yet sure way. It is a grand picture of standing one with another - strength standing with weakness, pure standing with impure and ministering standing with ministered to - what a beautiful picture of the Church.

Not only do we have that picture but we also have a picture of a church with sin in it - people that are impure, yet the work is on to bring about the final grand picture, of purity in the church.

What a goal to have as a church, to seek to attain purity in the church by assisting those that are having problems into a proper life of purity.

Now, consider your own church. How do you and your fellow members stand up to this picture? Is this picture even on your radar screen? Is there a concerted effort to assist those in sin, rather than to just condemn them? Is there a concerted effort to bring about purity of the assembly? Is there a concerted effort to raise up Godly, spiritual people that can minister to others in this manner?

10. In relation to this evaluation of one’s self: Proverbs 14:14 mentions ".... and a good man [shall be satisfied] from himself." I think we as believers need to take on this concept of self evaluation, and then self estimation. We need to look to the Word constantly to see how we measure up to it, we need to look to God in prayer to see how He values us, and we then need to consider all we are before God and His Word and come to some estimation of who we are.

This automatically blocks out the negative, the back biting, and the tearing down of others when it comes to our character. Yes, be sure to evaluate, yes, be sure to measure, yes be sure to come to a conclusion as to your own character - this character that we present to the world must come from within, rather than from someone else.

Teens, where are you on this, in most cases the individual teen looks to their peers for value, for estimation of their worth, however Proverbs says it MUST come from within. AND don’t get upset teens, because I know wayyyyyy too many adults that do the same thing as you - look to peers for value instead of to God.

It puzzles me just why we look to peers for value - we have a God that thinks we are special enough to be rewarded for our lives here on earth, special enough to make us heirs, and special enough to send His Son to die on the cross for, so why in the world would we look away from Him for value and look toward people that are phony, two faced, and opinionated?

Now, if that hasn’t convinced you maybe the words of an old timer will give you an assist. Barnes mentions: "The sentiment is, that he will find in himself a source of pure joy. He will not be dependent on the applause of others for happiness. In an approving conscience; in the evidence of the favour of God; in an honest effort to lead a pure and holy life, he will have happiness. The source of his joys will be within; and he will not be dependent--as the man of ambition, and the man who thinks of himself more highly than he ought, will--on the favours of a capricious multitude, and on the breath of popular applause."

Now, if that isn’t enough let me just quote a little more of Barnes comments on the passage. "He will not be dependent on others for happiness, Here is the true secret of happiness. It consists,

"(1.) in not forming an improper estimate of ourselves; in knowing just what we are, and what is due to us; in not thinking ourselves to be something, when we are nothing.

"(2.) In leading such a life that it may be examined to the core; that we may know exactly what we are, without being distressed or pained. That is, in having a good conscience, and in the honest and faithful discharge of our duty to God and man.

"(3.) In not being dependent on the fickle applause of the world for our comfort. The man who has no internal resources, and who has no approving conscience; who is happy only when others smile, and miserable when they frown, is a man who can have no security for enjoyment. The man who has a good conscience, and who enjoys the favour of God, and the hope of heaven, carries with him the source of perpetual joy. He cannot be deprived of it. His purse may be taken, and his house robbed, but the highwayman cannot rob him of his comforts. He carries with him an unfailing source of happiness when abroad, and the same source of happiness abides with him at home: he bears it into society, and it remains with him in solitude; it is his companion when in health, and when surrounded by his friends; and it is no less his companion when his friends leave him, and when he lies upon a bed of death."

11. Verse seven tells us that God is not mocked - not that He can’t be, not that He isn’t, but that He will not be - He will not stand for it. Certainly we can mock Him, certainly we can abuse His character, and certainly we can receive just recompense for it.

As I see the ads for some of the trash on the television I wonder how long God will allow the mockery to continue. The networks have taken sin and made a joke of it, they have taken sin and made it common place, and they have taken sin and uplifted it to the place where sin is rather a mute item in our society. Nothing is wrong, nothing is sin, and nothing is off limits.

The media will one day answer for their abuses and mockery of Almighty God. I do not want to see the results. I dread that day for them even though they have not the wisdom to know it is coming. God will not be mocked forever - take that one to the bank.

12. One must wonder at the situation that Paul had heard about at Galatia that brought about this series of thoughts in his letter. Some must have been spiritual in the assembly and others must have been faltering. It may well be that he is speaking of the Judaizers problems in this text. You that are spiritual, those that haven’t accepted this false doctrine, meekly and gently assist those that have accepted it to find their way out of the web they are in.

One commentary related this to the thought that legalists were trying to confront the sinners of the church, but I feel that would require the legalists to be the spiritual and Paul has just taken five chapters to rip on the legalist. Why in the world would he see them as spiritual? He would not.

13. It is with great glee that some hold this passage out to prove that sinless perfection is not possible. They go on to suggest that if we are sinlessly perfect, why would Paul have to include this passage. It is for this situation precisely Paul would insert it. If one is walking with God sinlessly, there is no guarantee that sin won’t find its way in - then this passage is necessary. Not that I believe in sinless perfectionism as taught by many, but the logic of some commentators needs to be picked up at the door where they must have checked it when they came in.

One such logician continued on to discuss the "WAR" that goes on in the person and the impossibility of not sinning. Guess he hasn’t read that the Holy Spirit is within to give us the victory rather than the Devil to bring us to defeat.

14. In verse two we have a phrase that we need to deal with. "fulfil the law of Christ." Just what will we do with this phrase? Tear it out of all our Bibles? Black it out? It can’t really belong here because everyone tells us that we can’t have a list of do’s and don’ts to live by else we be legalists.

Surprise, Christ has a list of do’s and don’ts - He has a law that we are supposed to follow. My goodness, what a shock to the system this must be when those folks read it.

We need to be clear that we aren’t under the Law of Moses, but we are under some requirements left to us by the Lord Jesus.

15. In verse six the word translated "that is taught" is the Greek word from which the English word Catechism is drawn. We, in the fundamental circles, tend to shy away from that term today because we don’t want to be associated with the Roman or Reform churches, however the thought of a Catechism might not be too bad considering some of the refuse being offered up in churches today. Sunday school lessons for kids can be based on anything - well almost anything, most avoid using the Bible I fear, but anything else works.

You can find curriculum in all sorts of odd and varied formats today.

The catechism is not a four-letter word; it is simply a way of teaching. Some of the older Bible Institutes used this method of question and answer to train their students. Indeed, I was asked if I didn’t teach like a SEMINarian! rather than as a Bible institute teacher, because I used questions to elicit thoughts of a topic or passage from the students mind rather than from a root book of questions and answers.

A catechism would be much preferred than a lesson based on an overweight purple dinosaur. Sorry if that offends, but God is going to require of us more than animal stories - HE GAVE US THE WORD FOR HELPING US TRAIN others. Others have reportedly used the TV show "The Simpsons" to teach spiritual things, and even others use "Harry Potter" books.

Isn’t that about the height of arrogance and stupidity to take the Word of God, set it aside and pick up tools of the world to try to teach spiritual truth?

Verse 2

Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.

This is one of those items where the church often falls down on the job. When another person is having a hard time, they are not the most pleasant person to be around. You feel uncomfortable because you don’t know how to help, indeed, often you can’t help. Sometimes the person is in a bad mood and strikes out at anyone that is around. It also takes time to get involved, and it often means you will be involved in the suffering to some extent. You may well begin to hurt with the person if it is related to death or injury.

HOWEVER, Paul tells us to do it. That is part of the support system of the church. We are to uphold one another so that we are all strong and standing for God.

One thing I give the Mormon Church - they know this principle and they practice it. If one of their people has a problem, they all have a problem until the trouble is over. They support their folks well in time of trouble.

This ability to care for everyone requires not only a willingness to become involved, but it requires that the church have some system of caring, of knowing when someone has a need. When a problem arises, many believers will just tuff it through on their own. Unless someone knows of the problem, the church can do nothing to assist.

Verse 3

For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.

Now, don’t we all know someone like this? Someone that is so full of himself that they have convinced themselves they are great and go around trying to convince everyone else of the same.

Reminds me greatly of a few presidential candidates, so sure they are the answer that they set themselves up and take months of time and millions of dollars trying to convince others of the same.

On the backside of this problem is the other problem, those that think so little of themselves that are really great. This is the better side to be on for sure, but we need to see how we measure up before God so that we can find our own standing as it is in reality. God’s value measurement is the one that counts.

I think there are many today that allow others to puff them up as well - this is not a good thing. Some of the "preferred" authors/speakers of our times have been elevated to near deity in print, yet they are still only mortal man. Read that as tongue in cheek. I once saw an ad of one author’s notes on the Bible as "The man that makes the Bible live." Now, the last I heard it was God that did that in the words themselves, rather than some mortal doing it via some notes at the bottom of the page.

Beware how you and others puff up your importance - you may have to answer to the shortcoming someday either before God or before man. Personally, I could adapt to some embarrassment before man, but to gain some before God would not be the pleasant thing that I would desire.

Verses 4-5

But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. 5 For every man shall bear his own burden.

Simply put, keep your eyes on your own work and value it personally as you will, but don’t put too much stock in what others tend to say about you. You will be held responsible for your own work, and your own perception of that work, not for someone else’s view of your work.

This relates in a couple of ways. First, in the way we have suggested, but also to the negative values that some might put on your work. If someone views you as worthless, as trouble, as inadequate to your job, don’t pay them a moments notice, it is you that will stand before God to give answer for your works and how you evaluated them.

Because someone calls you glorious or worthless matters little to God, it is what you do for God and what He thinks that is of value to your life. It is also God’s "glorious" or "worthless" that we should be considering.

That should free up a lot of us that have allowed negative reactions from others to slow our work for God. Negatives are negative only if we submit and subscribe to the supposed truth of them. If we hear a negative we should evaluate in light of God’s leading and Word. If we find ourselves lacking then remedy it, but if we find that the negative is untrue, set it aside and attempt to go on as if it never was voiced.

Not that putting aside these negatives is easy. They hurt and they hinder and they harm, but they are "false" negatives, they have no standing, they are falsehood, yet we all too often take them upon ourselves as if they were granted to us by God. He says in this passage "prove his own work" and not try to find rejoicing in the eyes of another.

You might find the following references of interest as well (Romans 14:5; Romans 14:10; Romans 14:12; cf. 2 Corinthians 5:10).

Verse 6

Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.

A new concept for the Galatian folks. The Jews were required to tithe (actually almost three tithes) and out of that money came the pay for teachers etc. The Gentiles had to pay taxes for all of their services as well. Here, Paul is suggesting that they honor their teachers out of love, rather than duty or requirement.

Uhhhh, got that churches and congregations? Support your pastor out of love, not requirement. Uhhhh, got that pastors? The church is to support you out of love not by way of what you require.

A friend told me of a young man that candidated in a small country church in the northwest. The church extended a call to the man offering him $20, 000 a year, a parsonage, and a large freezer that would never be empty. This was many years ago when $20, 000 wasn’t bad income without the parsonage and frills that he had been offered. He turned them down because it wasn’t enough money.

Now, I hope the church relied on our previous verse for their joy, for they had done well in their labor, but the candidates negative did not reflect reality and the congregation should have been proud to have offered so nice a subsistence to the man. They were taking verse six to heart, they were communicating unto the prospect "in all good things."

I don’t for a moment think this verse is basis for high pay for pastors. It is a principle, however, that if someone communicates the word to you, you should communicate in return "in all good things" which might include money, but it might also include helping him paint his house or taking them a meal when they are burdened with a hectic schedule.

Our present day "pay package" mentality in the pulpit is not Biblical, nor is it logical. A congregation should certainly care for their pastor if they opt for a full time man. However, that "care" need not be only in the area of money.

Another application of this principle might run along the lines of the large church that has multiple staff. When the giving is good and if this is the congregations will, then let them be paid, however if the giving drops and the congregation wants certain programs to continue but there isn’t enough money because it is going to salary, might it not be time for someone to move on? Often this possibility is not thought of, or just rejected out of hand by the leadership.

Multiple staff is usually based on need of hands to stir the pot, but if the pot is getting smaller, there is less need for the same number of hands to do the labor - someone should go stir elsewhere.

I might also step on the toes of the church and suggest that they hold their staff accountable to that phrase "taught in the word." Many churches I have attended have men that are not teaching the word. They are teaching every philosophy under the sun and very precious little of the Word. These ought not enjoy the communication from the congregation.

I once sat and listened to a man that read a verse and said he was using it for a jumping off point. Literally it was a jumping off point, because he never once referred to it or its principle again. Indeed, he never mentioned Scripture again. He carefully linked one story into another and into another until the time was gone.

After the service, I was having coffee and the buzz was about this great sermon that we had just heard. I contained myself for awhile, and then asked a few questions. What was the point of this message, what Scripture did he use, how did he use the Scripture, did he make a point from the Scripture? The silence was beyond silence. Finally a couple of the young men saw that little light bulb go on over their head and realized that it was a good story time, but as a sermon, a message from God it was lacking in the grandest fashion.

The congregation needs to watch their use of what they have. God will hold them accountable for how they use that which God blesses them with.

I would add one other thought to this section. I personally believe that Paul was discerning in accepting money. I believe he taught that one feeding should be remunerated in some way. I also personally believe that the paid full time pastor is not Biblical, but allowable if a congregation chooses to do so. I think there are more beneficial ways to use the money and also believe that most laymen could preach and teach as good a sermon as many I’ve heard in churches.

I was working in a small rural work on a part time basis and being paid a small sum each week. When I elaborated my beliefs on this subject one of the women said after the message, "Well, if you really believe that we just won’t pay you any more." I told her that was up to the church. That week was the last check that I received from that congregation - be careful who you share your beliefs with :-) (She happened to be the church treasurer.)

Verse 7

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

This is a grand principle of the Word, and it is a grand principle of nature. If you sow oats, you reap oats, if you sow corn, you reap corn, if you sow sin, you reap sin. Imagine the farmer that sowed corn and went out with his corn picker and found a field of wheat. Hum, do you think he would be a tad confused? I think we all know the reality of this verse well. We can’t live in sin and expect grand blessings from the God we thumb our nose at.

The politician that constantly lies cannot wonder why he is labeled a liar, the worker that steals from his employer, cannot wonder why he is labeled a thief, and the bookkeeper that takes from the boss, cannot wonder why he is labeled an embezzler. So, the Christian that lives in sin cannot wonder why God labels him carnal or sinful. One results in the other, no matter how much we would desire it to be otherwise.

The young Christian couple that is living together that says God is leading them - NOT - God does not lead His people into sin! Rather takes sin to the edge when you sin as you please and then blame it on God. Talk of the height of arrogance.

Verse 8

For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

Let me be blunt here for Paul seems to be. If a man and a woman, outside the bounds of marriage, decide to have a little pleasure in the flesh, they cannot wonder why they reap a child in nine months. Many couples are like Aaron when he declared that he dumped a bunch of gold into the fire and out came this golden idol - like how did that happen?

Man is infamous for declaring innocence, but this verse calls us to understand that principle of God and of life - you sow - you will reap in like kind no matter how hard you want or try to make that principle change - it will not.

The reverse of sowing to flesh or sin is to sow to the spiritual side of the equation. Sow spiritual and you shall reap life everlasting. I might add that if you sow to the spiritual you will reap abundance in the spiritual realm as well. You may leave this life a pauper, a despised individual, and one that seemingly has failed in life, but you will enter a life that is so full of abundance that the lackings of this life will matter little.

Verse 9

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

The antidote for coming up at the end in the negative - "well doing" is the key. If we sow "well doing" we will reap "well doing." No other possibility exists nor can exist. Sow well, and you will reap well - it can’t be any other way, for God has set the principle and here He promises that principle will stand.

Your good works will be rewarded with Good. Now, it might be that the reward is a long time off in the future, but it will come. God guarantees it.

Many weary in good works, for they do not immediately see the good reward, but we should continue in good works and allow God to have His time table for reward.

Barnes on the subject: "We shall reap, if we faint not. If we do not give over, exhausted and disheartened. It is implied here, that unless a man perseveres in doing good to the end of life, he can hope for no reward. He who becomes disheartened, and who gives over his efforts; he that is appalled by obstacles, and that faints on account of the embarrassments thrown in his way; he that pines for ease, and withdraws from the field of benevolence, shows that he has no true attachment to the cause, and that his heart has never been truly in the work of religion. He who becomes a true Christian, becomes such FOR ETERNITY. He has enlisted, never to withdraw. He becomes pledged to do good and to serve God always. No obstacles are to deter, no embarrassments are to drive him from the field. With the rigour of his youth, and the wisdom and influence of his riper years; with his remaining powers when enfeebled by age; with the last pulsation of life here, and with his immortal energies in a higher world, he is to do good. For that he is to live. In that he is to die; and when he awakes in the resurrection with renovated powers, he is to awake to an everlasting service of doing good, as far as he may have opportunity, in the kingdom of God."

Verse 10

As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all [men], especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

Another principle of life. Do good to all men, but to Christians do even more.

Now, that is a hard one in this day. Christians are no more than worldly often times, and it is hard to distinguish the believer from the world. I mention from time to time how much the church is like the world. I won’t take further space to prove that point here, but know that it is a principle - we need to find out just who it is that is a believer, even though it is a hard job for us to do.

I think this passage also tells us that we need not go looking and searching for ways to do good, but as we walk through life, we need to do good as we go "as we have therefore opportunity." When we have a chance, grab it and fulfill it.

One might wonder why we are to do good to ALL. We are all God’s creation and as such we ought to treat each other as such, but to the Christian, our brother or sister in Christ, we ought to do more, do as we would to our earthly brothers and sisters.

In our present society this is a hard one to apply. We have so many today that are working the system, that are abusing the system of welfare, of charity, of being kind to one another. We have panhandlers that are making more than we are at work by begging on the street - people that could hold a regular job, but choose not to.

We have Christians going from church to church seeking assistance from brothers with no compunction against abusing their relationship in the Lord.

How do we cope with this Scripture in this climate? Do good to all and more for the believer. The passage is clear in its commandment, and it is not stated that we should concern ourselves of the outcome.

A man knocked on our door one evening needing money to buy gas for his car. He said he would pay it back the next day. I had my doubts, but felt he might be telling the truth so gave him the money. He turned as he left and said, "May the Lord Bless." I said, He does, that is why you have the money in your hand. He knew full well it was God that would deal with it from there and I fear the man will have a lot to answer for when God deals with him.

Do good and let God care for the results.

Verse 11

Week Thirteen: 6:11-18 We Walk In Freedom Because Of Christ (Review/Overview)

Ye see how large a letter I have written unto you with mine own hand.

We all know that Paul had some physical impairment that caused him trouble over many years. It was not only a source of trial for him, but it is also a source of proof that the gift of healing was inactive even in His lifetime. He could not heal himself even though many were healed by the simple touch of a handkerchief that had been from him. Acts 19:12 "So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them."

Timothy was told to take a little wine for his stomach sake, thus there was a lack of healing with both men. 1 Timothy 5:23 "Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities."

Paul also left Trophimus unhealed in 2 Timothy 4:20 "but Trophimus have I left at Miletum sick."

I have discussed this with people that believe in the gift of healing and they have never brought forth an argument for this. It may be that I usually tie this with the fact that in Mark, tongues is lumped with snakes and drinking poison, and since tongues and healing are normally joined at the hip little is suggested to counter the comments. Well, it might relate some to the invitation that I usually give at the end of my comments - to come to my city and empty the hospitals if they really have this gift. (Mark 16:17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.)

It seems he gives a last call to them to realize the reality of his effort, the depth of his love and the strength of his character as he attempts to draw them away from the false teaching and back to the truth of grace.

The word translated "large" relates to bigness more than to numbers, it relates to largeness geometrically as opposed to largeness arithmetically. A simpler way to say it would be volume as opposed to number of pages. I used to print very small before my computering days. I could jam more information on a page than most small font typewriters. I could do volume rather than numbers. When writing for myself, "volume" was my talent, when it was the ten page term paper due the next day, I could do "numbers" very well with my huge handwriting.

Paul has given his very best effort to convince them, he has even handwritten this large letter to them - most likely at the cost of great difficulty for those he was very concerned about.

Some quibble about what this large letter idea means, one translator makes it "See what large letters" to indicate the individual letter size rather than the whole of the letter. This will be covered a little more later.

Verses 11-18


1. Do we add a little on top of our Christianity to blend into the crowd - INTO THE WORLD IS THE TRUE NATURE OF THE QUESTION?

2. In verse sixteen we see that Paul mentions Israel. He has just torn apart the line of teaching that the law is part of our work toward salvation, and has surely set the law aside in the people’s minds as having any importance, yet he brings Israel back into the picture.

Why? I suggest that Paul is still in these days looking for a restoration of Israel. In the book of Acts we see that he is preaching the kingdom in the closing days of his life. He seemed to be looking for the culmination of God’s working with Israel - the kingdom. Acts 28:23 "And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into [his] lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and [out of] the prophets, from morning till evening." and Acts 28:31 "Preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him."

Quite the verses to consider after reading a book like Galatians that has laid the law aside, beat it a little and basically made it of no account.

He wasn’t beating the law, but rather misapplication of it in the church. He knew that God was not finished with Israel; he knew that Israel still had an existence, and he knew that God wanted to finish His business with them. His preaching of the kingdom was in response to that belief and that commitment to his own people.

3. Okay, we have a strong doctrinal message, with a very abrupt end. How do we apply this? Okay pastors, one more time, say what ya got tu say and shut up :-) I love writing for the internet where people understand informality and a sense of humor - pastors - I mean you no disrespect, I have tremendous respect for you and your ministry - just wish you’d shorten things up now and then :-)

This especially in invitations. I’ve seen guest speakers give an adequate and stirring invitation, only to have a pastor get up and give another one or two just in case the Holy Spirit was slow in moving the people in their hearts.

On a more serious note. I’ve seen many men say what they had to say and perceiving they may not have convinced the people set out with more rhetoric to make things better, only to lay further ground work for doubt. If you don’t get it accomplished the first time, you probably won’t get it done the second or third time.

I feel some speakers forget that the Holy Spirit is within, and that these people in the pew actually can think. Some of the explanations of doctrine I hear are geared to three year olds, not adults.

4. Barnes makes a good list relating to the glory of the cross.

"(1.) of the love of Him who suffered there;

"(2.) of the purity and holiness of his character, for the innocent died there for the guilty;

"(3.) of the honour there put on the law of God by his dying to maintain it unsullied;

"(4.) of the reconciliation there made for sin, accomplishing what could be done by no other oblation, and by no power of man;

"(5.) of the pardon there procured for the guilty;

"(6.) of the fact that through it we become dead to the world, and are made alive to God;

"(7.) of the support and consolation which goes from that cross to sustain us in trial; and,

"(8.) of the fact that it procured for us admission into heaven, a title to the world of glory. All is glory around the cross. It was a glorious Saviour who died; it was glorious love that led him to die; it was a glorious object to redeem a world; and it is unspeakable glory to which he will raise lost and ruined sinners by his death. Oh, who would not glory in such a Saviour!"

5. In verse seventeen Paul makes mention of the marks in his body. This is the Greek word stigma, the word "stigmata" is from. You may have heard this term in relation to the Roman church. They believe that Christ puts His marks on the bodies of special ones in this life. Every now and then you will hear reports of bleeding hands, or bleeding sides, or bleeding foreheads from the wounds of the crown of thorns on Christ’s brow.

This IS NOT what Paul was talking about. There is no basis for any of this in Scripture. A general reading of this passage cannot come to the conclusion that Paul was bleeding all the time he was writing and doing as he did day in day out.

In reality slaves were often branded and idol worshipers often took upon themselves the name of their God to show devotion.

Paul may have been relating to physical scars he had suffered due to his stand for Christ. It is not uncommon for men to be glad that they have scars to remind them and others of their devotion to something or someone. Men from the wars of recent generations wear their wounds proudly and well they should. They have served their country well in its defense.

6. Barnes elaborates on Paul’s physical infirmity by quoting the two references that mention it, though I had never heard the Galatians text tied directly to the infirmity.

"And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure." 2 Corinthians 12:7.

"And my temptation which was in my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as angel of God, even as Christ Jesus. Where is then the blessedness ye spake of? for I bear you record, that, if it had been possible, ye would have plucked out your own eyes, and have given them to me." Galatians 4:14-15.

"ST. PAUL’S infirmity was one well known in hot climates, a chronical ophthalmia. Hence he was what is called "blear-eyed," and was often perhaps obliged to wear a shade. It made his personal appearance mean; it was a visible infirmity in his flesh; it hindered his usefulness, and therefore he besought the Lord anxiously that it might depart from him. It made it, for the most part, painful and difficult to write; hence he generally employed an amanuensis, and regarded it as a great matter when he used his own pen. The calling it "a messenger of Satan" is perfectly consistent with its being a bodily disease. Satan, in fifty places, is represented as the immediate author of corporeal defects and maladies."

He goes on to suggest that this may have occurred on the occasion of his salvation experience when he was blinded. To suggest that such a physical impairment could accompany such a spiritual repair at first seems inconsistent, though it may be that Christ wanted him in a humble and contrite spirit both physically and spiritually.

Barnes also mentions that this particular eye problem gives forth with much pain and it is similar to the sticking of a thorn.

7. Some suggest that Paul’s mention of big letter relates to writing the ending only in his own hand and because he could not see well unless the letters were huge.

Others suggest that the apostle was not acquainted with writing in Greek so that the letters were large and crude. Neither of these are supported in the text to any degree.

8. This idea of works and the cross might be summed up in the following thought. To accept the cross is salvation, to take up the cross is living. Two very separate and different items.

To accept there is nothing to do, but to take up there is everything to do. Christ supplies all that is needed in acceptance, and we supply all that is needed in taking up. Neither is required. Acceptance increases greatly your enjoyment of eternity, and taking up the cross will do the same through the rewards that you may receive.

9. I might add a short note about letters, letter writing and letter reception. To many of our teenagers that have never received a letter, these things of antiquity were once prized for their interest and content. In today’s email, text messaging, and instant messenger messages, we have totally lost the art of letter writing. Many today have no idea of what letters were like in the good ole days - back when the computer was still a figment of someone’s imagination.

A letter took time, you had to think of what you wanted to say, you had to think of how you were going to say it, you then had to write it down on paper, then reread what you had written and assure yourself that it was clear as you have presented it.

In an email you may or may not go through some of these processes. Usually you just jot down what comes to mind and you hit send.

When I was in the Navy at electronics school I would go to the post office to check my mail daily, even at times twice a day - not that there was ever any there for me. The letter was very important to me - to hear from someone that I knew and cared for. The letters usually, when they came, contained information of what was going on at home, how the family was doing etc.

Letters in the old days were of great interest and of great importance. Many today miss that personal contact from the mail as opposed to the cold quickness of the internet.

Paul’s letter must have meant a lot to these folks. They knew him and would have been concerned for his welfare; they loved him because he was their spiritual father. This letter had to have been a mixed blessing, the goodness of hearing from their Paul, but the discomfort of being reprimanded by him.

Application of this might go along the following line: Continue to write letters or emails, but give a little more thought to the content and the way you word things. May our communications with one another be more meaningful and personal.

10. Verse thirteen mentions that those requiring circumcision did not necessarily follow the law in other areas. You do what I say, but I do what I want might be the idea set forth. Often you will see this inconsistency in leadership.

Years ago we knew of a church where the pastor decided it was wrong to watch television. He preached often on the sins of television. He even had some of the members selling their television sets - of course they used the church bulletin board for advertising - I won’t go into that for the purpose of this account is to let you know that of course the pastor needed to watch television so he would know what was going on in the world.

Yes, to a point he is right, but isn’t he questioning the congregations ability to discern as well as he can?

Many in the "God wants all believers to be rich" movement try and try to give until they are rich, but it is usually only the leadership that gets rich, not the average congregant.

If you are going to teach something, be sure you are willing to live by the same standard that you set for others.

11. In verse fourteen we read "by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world." - a strong declaration by Paul, a declaration of fact, not hope so, not I think so, but fact.

Some would argue that, no, Paul could not mean that the world was crucified; he only meant that each morning he crucified the world. This is not the thrust of the text. The verb is a perfect passive. Perfect means an action that is continuing on into the future to a point of completion. He is crucified today, he will still be crucified tomorrow and he will always be crucified until he is with the Lord. Passive means that the person acted upon is not involved in the action. He is crucified from without, not of his own will, nor of any works of the mind.

This really does not fit with a lot of theology around today in case you don’t know. Most feel the old nature and the new nature are battling it out daily and often during the day. Others clarify it a little and say that it is self or the old nature battling with the Spirit of God. This is closer to the truth but yet far from it. If we are made new as the Word tells us we are, how can we have old within us.

Our bent as human beings is to satisfy ourselves. It is this bent that struggles for control of the persons life. We either choose to follow the Spirit with our life, or we decide to follow our own wants and desires.

This passage tends to indicate that once made this decision is carried along - this is what Paul talked about earlier - walking in the Spirit. When we make that decision the Spirit then moves us along with Him. This supports my thought earlier in the book that we should ask the Spirit for guidance in those pop up situations where we have to make a snap decision. If we are with the Spirit and make a decision based on what He is doing in our life, then it will be a good decision. On the other hand if we are doing what we want we often will make decisions that take best advantage for our own desires rather than what God might want.

As we come to a close in our study I would like to consider the freedom we have in Christ, the freedom that Paul sets forth so clearly. Just a little consideration of what "free" really means. It means to me that we are free to do as we will, and that we are free from the Mosaic Law. There is further application that we are free from any set system of doing or thinking that is required for salvation in the person’s mind.

Now, that we are free from all these encumbrances, we are free to do as we please, right? Not quite so fast. We are free from what we have listed but we are not free from all those things that Christ told us to do. We are not free from caring for the poor, we are not free from the great commission - to evangelize the world, we are not free from loving one another, and we are not free from any of the New Testament commands and limitations placed on the believer.

We are free to submit ourselves to the control of the Spirit, we are free to offer ourselves on the alter of sacrifice of service; we are free to submit ourselves to the Master and Owner of our lives. In truth complete subservience to Christ is where we find freedom as believers. We don’t have to follow some magical formula, we don’t have to follow some list of laws, and we have only to follow the Spirit within us to a life of service to our King.

Some would call this servitude, slavery or something worse, but the apostle tells us this is freedom in Christ. I will take Paul’s view as I believe via inspiration; it is indeed God’s view.

I know many Christians that live their lives not doing certain things because they think if they do, God will get them. Not so. We are free to walk with Him and within that framework we are free to do all that we want and all that He leads us to do.

To me this life of not doing is a life of fear, not of freedom. It leads to viewing God as one that is out to get you if you don’t tow the line. Paul describes a God that loves us and wants us to walk with Him.

Kind of like God walking in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve. Contemplate that scene, that experience, that possibility. Walking and talking with God as if He were a close friend. That is what we are free to do. That is what Paul seems to describe in his letters. That is what we have available if we will only make that decision to walk in the Spirit.

It gives you freedom to talk to Him at any time, about any topic, and about any need. We don’t have to take ten minutes relating our sin, our sorrow and seek His forgiveness, we have nothing to confess, we have been walking with Him and He has certainly not led us into sin.

We can know that decisions we make are with His assistance because we have been with Him all the time. Freedom to some may be servitude, but to me it is pure pleasure, pure freedom to know I am doing right before my God.

Before leaving this book I would like to take a look at one point that is really only loosely related to the book of Galatians, but very related to Paul and his life. He was totally committed to the ministry even before he was saved. He was totally committed to persecuting Christians, then after salvation he was totally committed to the Gospel and its cause.

We saw a number of times that Paul mentioned the cross and his commitment to it. There are a number of times in the other epistles that show us that his commitment was totally real and totally total - he was given over to living for and serving his Savior.

Now, to the application. Many men and women in every generation have made this same commitment. Some have totally given themselves over to serving God and His people. They have committed their life, their fortune (which normally is in the unearned stage :-) and their time to doing what God has given them to do. These people left all that they could be and became what God asked them to become. Missionarys, pastors, teachers, doctors nurses and many other occupations. They have gone off to Bible College and/or seminary to learn what they need to do the ministry of God.

Now, I wonder if Paul ever stopped to consider his life on some starry night in the middle of nowhere, just what his life had been all about. Or maybe on one of those dark cold nights in prison after praying, I wonder if he took stock of what he had been all about. I am not suggesting he questioned his God, God’s direction, nor God’s plan for his life. I am not suggesting that he regretted in any way what he had done with his life.

Just wondering if he ever considered what had passed. What he had not accomplished for himself - his desires, his plans, and his wishes for life. What might have been had he not been started down that spiritual path. Would he have become a great philosopher, a great orator, a great politician? Would he have become involved in marriage, had a family, raised grand kids?

I raise this question, because I know for a fact some modern day men/women of God go through these questions. They aren’t regretting their decisions, they are not questioning God, nor are they doubting the life that they have lead. They just take a little time to wonder what might have been.

I raise the question to set some minds at ease. You aren’t the only one that has gone through this process even though you most likely have gone through it alone or maybe with a loving spouse.

What you have done is not wrong, I think it is probably natural as long as it doesn’t come to doubt or questioning of God’s ways in your life.

I don’t think many that go through this process do much more than do it and dwell on it for contemplations sake and them move on to realize the glorious life that God has allowed them to lead. It is not an earth moving experience, just some realization of what is.

I doubt I am doing this topic due service. I trust there is some encouragement in this for some that have taken this journey.

I think these thoughts often rise when we talk to someone or see a television program that jogs our minds to think for a moment. Most high school graduates have thoughts of grandeur and dreams, and wishes that they want to fulfill, yet these folks that I am speaking of set all those items aside and follow their Lord.

It has been my observation that God directs many things along life’s path and many of these youthful desires come to pass in your life even though you are serving Him. Many that wanted families have had great families in the process. Others that have had desires of other things have found that God allows those items to fall into place along with the things He wants accomplished.

I think there is also a truth in that some that had those great dreams couldn’t have accomplished anything had they been left to their efforts; but on the other hand, God has taken those lives and allowed those to accomplish great things in the spiritual realm. What a joy for those to know that God picked them to do great things for Him.

The key in all of these lives is that God is in control, and that God has their full commitment for all that He desires for them to do. The cross was Christ’s grand work, what might be yours. Don’t ever allow thoughts of what might have been to interfere with what might be. We can’t change the past, and often can’t change the present, but we can - with God’s help do grand things in the future.

While considering what might have been, time must be given to what is - what you have been able to do for God. Consider well that there are many things that you have accomplished that you may never hear about until eternity. That young child you led to the Lord in Sunday school class - you have no idea what that child grew into as an adult. That person you helped along side the road and left a tract with - you have to let God decide what is to come of that. You have no idea what might be accomplished through your little effort.

One must wonder just how many people’s lives were changed by this letter to the Galatians. Both to the original readers and to those through the centuries that have been blessed by it. Paul exerted great effort to write the letter and left the results up to the One that directed his course. It might be observed that he had no idea that anyone but a few believers of his own day would read it.

Imagine Albert Barnes and other great commentators - they wrote for their own readers not knowing that anyone else outside their generation would have an interest. Barne’s Notes has become a standard in conservative circles - someone to check when wondering about your line of thought.

Now, in conclusion, remember these final thoughts just set down are actually describing the freedom in Christ that we have. What more could we want in life? How can a grand house compare with that? How can the finest SUV stack up to that? How can popularity and position match the position we have in Him? How can riches in this life outweigh the rewards in the next for all eternity?

Verse 12

As many as desire to make a fair shew in the flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.

In Paul’s day Christianity was viewed by most as a sect of Judaism. It was an upstart bunch of radicals that were following this radical Jesus. It seems from this verse that the Judaizers were attempting to avoid persecution as believers by making themselves look more like Jews - you know, they were trying to get under the radar screen of the persecutors. They were trying to blend into the woodwork. They were trying to avoid what certainly would come from those that saw them as followers of Christ.

This may well be the answer to several questions asked in this study relating to why the Judaizers were teaching these things.

It is easier to tack some simple belief on top of your Christianity to get along with the crowd - I won’t take time to develop that one right now, but aren’t believers doing the same thing?

When the Roman persecution really got under way the believers were taken before Caesar and told to worship him as god. It would be easy to say a few words in subservience to a worldly ruler - you know you aren’t really worshiping Caesar; you really weren’t setting aside Christ as they wanted you to do. Indeed, many believers did this very thing and rationalized their way to favor with the Romans. However, those that took this easy way out were not accepted by believers that knew it to be wrong. Many gave their lives for the Lord rather than diminish their testimony for him.

The avoidance of persecution should never be an influence upon our theology and belief system. I rather suspect that many allowed their system of belief to be bent during the Second World War since the religious system failed to raise warning or negativity against Hitler and his persecution of the Jews, or the many other atrocities that were carried out.

Indeed, the survival of these systems under his dominion seems proof enough that there was compromise of some sort.

Verse 13

For neither they themselves who are circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh.

It seems that Paul thought the Judaizers were requiring circumcision, in part, so that they could have glory in their accomplishment. This would, I assume to be the accomplishment of making converts to their line of thought.

Verse 14

But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.

Paul goes on to suggest that we should only find glory in the cross of the Lord. Nothing that we do in this life should be the focus, but rather the cross.

Application of this might run along the lines of a pastor that has pioneered a work, nurtured it and lead it into growth to a large number. He should take no credit but rather give credit to Christ for the church is His. It might run along the line of great authors that have reached millions with their books - however glory should be given to the Christ that allowed the production of those books.

He goes on to say that the world is of none effect on him and a rather interesting statement, that he is crucified to the world - dead, of none effect. He realizes that only the cross and Christ’s work on it will last, and anything we might "accomplish" in this life will be lost. Remember, that few will remember you existed in a generation after your death.

This idea of dead to all but the Lord has real relations to our day. On an internet forum the subject of pastoral pay packages came up. There was no thought to sacrifice for your Lord, it was all about the pastor isn’t a second class citizen and he should receive at least the average of his congregation’s income. Most were talking sixty thousand plus benefits as a minimum acceptable amount.

No concept of - let me live on less so we can give more to missions - you know - an example of how all of us should live, but rather, I should live as well as you do.

Verse 15

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.

Again, he emphasizes the salvation of the soul - that important occurrence that changes the person, is the all including requirement. Circumcision or none - no matter, only the cross and the individual’s salvation.

That includes all that man tries to find favor with God with - no good works, no good life will do, only the cross.

Verse 16

And as many as walk according to this rule, peace [be] on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.

Paul seeks peace and mercy for all that are in Christ. He adds an interesting phrase. "And upon the Israel of God." What does he mean by that? Is he suggesting some link back to Israel? Only the link that Christ is the blessing promised, He is the peace and He is only peace because of His mercy upon us.

Verse 17

From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.

This seems to be a declaration that he has done his best with them and that he is finished trying to work with the situation - accept my word or reject it but don’t bother me with it anymore. I know some pastors that know just how he felt at this point. They, like Paul had the marks of the Lord in their bodies.

I was asked to a missions conference in California and on the first night I found that the pastor had just resigned from his position. I talked with him about it for awhile and I asked him if he was glad to be leaving or if he had mixed feelings. He smiled and said that he was very glad to be moving on and that the ministry was finished. He explained that he had struggled with the people for years, trying to get them to mature in the Lord, but that little had been accomplished over the years.

He went on to tell me of some of the trouble he had with his deacons. Some had just been hateful to him, I won’t go into detail, but hateful seems a very impotent word. One of them could deserve the terms very nasty.

You can do so much with a people before you have done all that you can - then it is time to move on to other possibilities.

Verse 18

Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ [be] with your spirit. Amen.

If you look at Paul’s other letters, you will know that this is a very abrupt ending. I believe the explanation of the previous verse is part of that shortness, but also we might realize that his physical problem, may well have made this large letter a real and heavy burden upon him - especially to pen it himself.

You don’t think the added blessing of "grace" was a final nail in the coffin of the Judaizers do you? Just one last emphasis on grace as opposed to the law. I suspect that may have crossed their minds if it didn’t Paul’s.

The blessing being placed on their "spirit" may well be another measured comment to remind them one final time that it is the spirit that God wants to deal with, not the body - not that the spirit correctly matured won’t control the body!

Amen, or so be it. It is closed. Not unlike the formula recent presidents and candidates have adopted, "and may God bless America." - well if they can say that to millions, why can’t we talk about God in the schools might be a line of thought to pursue.

Bibliographical Information
Derickson, Stanley. "Commentary on Galatians 6". "Derickson's Notes on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/sdn/galatians-6.html.
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