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It’s Personal

Read This Week: Galatians 6

But watch yourselves, 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 they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves. 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 the opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. See what large letters I use as I write to you with my hand! – Galatians 6:1-3, 9-11 NIV

Anytime someone says, “It’s not personal,” you can be sure that it is, in fact, very personal. That statement as a whole is a myth. Everything is personal to somebody, whether it be in a marriage, friendship, in business and certainly when it comes to having a relationship with God. Consequently, the vast majority of what is undertaken or attempted in life, cannot help but be personal.

The Apostle Paul certainly had a deep, personal connection to his calling, his work and the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was emotionally and spiritually invested in the mission and people, therefore, he took what he said and taught in his letters very seriously and personally. His passion and personal investment in the work of the Lord is evident in the last chapter of Galatians.

Paul usually dictated the content of his letters to a scribe but would write a short farewell. However, in Galatians 6, he decides to write the entire closing paragraph himself. He was intent on making one more stand for the true Gospel and one more reiteration of how we should live as followers of Jesus. He says in verse 9, See what large letters I use as I write to you with my hand! He wrote in bigger letters than normal for emphasis as if to say, “Don’t miss this!”

For Paul, the Christian life was serious and personal and he didn’t want us to miss some final teachings and encouragement about grace, freedom and our responsibility to each other and the world. He took it personally to warn us against the traps of temptation and the importance of avoiding religion and its oppressive teachings. He wants us to have the opposite attitude and desire of the religious and look out for one another in humility and bear each other’s burdens.

Paul didn’t want the Galatian church nor does he want us to give up or stop doing good things just because we face some challenges. He passionately tells us to take our walk with God personally while not making it about ourselves. He writes in verse 14, “May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.” From this, we see that it is far better to live in persecution for Jesus than to die in popularity without Him.

Lastly, Galatians 6 teaches that we should always take grace personally. The final thing Paul writes to the believers is for the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ to be with their spirits. He closes the letter the same way that he began it, with an emphasis on the power of God’s grace in the life of the Christian. His overall message is that a healthy, grace-filled individual depends on Christ’s life in them to be enough. It is personal, powerful and all anyone needs.

8 Comments

  1. Heidi on October 27, 2019 at 5:53 am

    Galatians 6:10 says, “So then, as occasion and opportunity open up to us, let us do good [morally] to all people [not only] being useful or profitable to them, but also doing what is for their spiritual good and advantage]. Be mindful to be a blessing, especially to those of the household of faith [those who belong to God’s family with you, the believers].”

    God was sharing with me that it’s important to be mindful and to be a blessing to everyone because we don’t know what is going on in people’s lives. Even when it looks like someone is not responding to God, we are to be the ones to (pray) ask God what we can do to help those in need. Especially those who belong to God’s family. We should be a blessing and help others stay on track with God and not run the other way.

    • Jason on October 29, 2019 at 11:20 am

      This is always a sobering and convicting challenge, Heidi and one I need to hear constantly. As you said, we just simply don’t know what a person is going through, struggling with or where exactly they are on the journey. We have to be faithful to the call of loving and serving them just as Galatians 6 says.

      My favorite part of that verse is: Let us do good to all people being useful or profitable to them, but also doing what is for their spiritual good. I want to be profitable to people both personally and spiritually. I want the lives of others to be enriched and better because of the relationship we have. I never want the opposite to be the case. Thank you for this encouragement and challenge.

      • Heidi on October 30, 2019 at 7:14 am

        Thank you, Jason, for all you do! I love to hear God through you! You are a great encourager. Have a blessed day!

        • Jason on November 4, 2019 at 8:52 am

          Thank you so much for your kind, encouraging words, Heidi! It is a blessing and honor to do life with and connect over God’s word with you guys. I appreciate you and your heart!

  2. Samuel Centers on October 27, 2019 at 7:11 pm

    Today as we came to the end of this series in Galatians 6, God drew my attention to verse 1. God says through Paul, “Brethren, if any person is overtaken in misconduct or sin in any sort, you who are spiritual (who are responsive to and controlled by the Spirit) should set Him right and restore him, without any sense of superiority and with all gentleness, keeping an attentive eye on yourself, lest you should be tempted also.”

    What God was saying to me through that verse was, “You have given your life to me and as you have done so, I have only one request of you. Give your life to others. Share my hope with people and help them in their time of need so that they see Me through you and all I have done for you. Share me with them so they can see for themselves.”

    And what that means to me is that I should always be on the lookout for those in need. I should always be willing to help them no matter where they are. Thank you, God, for this message.

    • Jason on October 29, 2019 at 11:37 am

      May we all respond to the challenge and word you received from God, Sam. May the Lord and His Spirit empower and inspire us all to be on the lookout for those in need. To be conscious of those in the world, in our family, neighborhood and church that need a touch, need tangible help or are just in need of a friend.

      If we will be faithful to this simple calling on our lives, then our families, communities, cities, and churches will find healing in Christ and be places of hope, peace, and salvation through Jesus. Serving the Lord is personal and we should always live that way.

  3. almaschmidt on October 27, 2019 at 8:47 pm

    Today at church, God blessed me with a song from Pastor Ken’s message called “Walking in the Spirit”

    Walking in the spirit, walking in the spirit
    Walking in the spirit with our Lord

    Whose words strengthen us through His power
    His fruit is in us growing and maturing, growing and maturing
    Sharing his love, his everlasting love

    Walking in the spirit, walking in the spirit
    Walking in the spirit with our Lord

    When we walk with God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, everything is amazing. He loves us so much and gives us what we need and the freedom to do life with Him. So let’s just do it with Christ our Father.

    • Jason on October 29, 2019 at 11:56 am

      Thank you for this offering of praise and worship, Alma. I am so thankful as I know you are for the Holy Spirit and the power he gives us to, as you said, “live in freedom and do life with Him.” Your song made me think of the passage one chapter back in Galatians 5:16, 22-24:

      But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh… But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things, there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

      I want those things to be true of my life and expressed through me every day and I’m thankful that I don’t have to manufacture them on my own but God produces them in me when I follow and walk with Him in the Spirit. Thank you for the reminder through the expression of a song.

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