Archive for the ‘Galatians’ Category

Christian Love (Gal. 6:10)

May 26, 2012

In (Gal.6:10) we read  “Therefore, whenever we have opportunity, we should do good to everyone, especially to those in the household of faith”.  Here we see two directives. One, do well to those outside the faith, secondly, do well especially to those among our household (church) of faith.” With this short paragraph of inspired words, we can gain volumes in instructions of  righteousness (right doing).

Within the last couple of weeks the Lord brought me two examples  on the first part of the above. I mention these not to infer you must do them, only as examples of the doing good to our people outside the faith.

In both instances they occurred at gas stations. The first, I pulled in  to get gas, I noticed this  long haired skinny unkept man looking through the trash can. Also immediately I felt the urge . “Invite this man into the Arco and buy him lunch” I thought. So I said “hey brother, follow me into the store, I’ll buy you lunch.” He looked at me with a surprised look, but quickly came along. I said upon entering  “go over there and get a sandwich and what ever else you want.”

So we checked out and he gave me a big “thank you”. I said “God be with you bro.”  No preaching, no words of advice, the actions had spoken instead. Just maybe this act will be remembered and the Lord will start to work on His heart in some way.

The second happened when I pulled up, again to an Arco. I get out and this man about 30 comes up and points to his truck with his wife and kid inside. “Hey bro, could I bum a few dollars from you, we need to go to Ontario and we’re out of money.”  I didn’t have any cash on hand and so I said “No, I don’t have cash”. And proceeded to walk in to the store  to purchase gas with my debit card. As I was in there, it occurred to me –how would I feel in that position stranded with my family? So after getting the gas, I walked out and yelled over to him “what pump you on?”  He told me and I went back in and purchased 25.00 gas for him. He was profusely thankful and I felt the Lord’s will had been done.

Did I have “opportunity” to do good to my brethren in the above examples? Yes, of course. Our Lord very well may have placed those in my path, knowing I had the means to help, to see my actions.

I have Steps to Christ books in the back of my truck, and when the opportunity arises I hand out to certain people. Yet, in both of these instances I felt the kind acts were sufficient to touch them and possibly lead them to think of “brotherly love” and thereby to their Maker. The old saying “action speaks louder than words” can be so true in many instances. “..Be ye doers of the word..” (James 1:22)

Christian love clearly is shown in our actions.  Our Lord said the following “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another ” (John 13:35). We should  remember the simple things of our Christian walk. The basics can sometimes be overlooked, as if we don’t need them. The common courtesies, the prompt return calls, emails, etc. can be very good habits showing our love and kindness.  We can become careless and neglect the plain simple truths and acts of love.

Can we imagine someone in the Lord’s circle asking Him a sincere question and the Lord just looking at Him then walking away? Our Lord  is our example in all things right? Look at His courtesy, He even wrapped and folded His own burial clothe upon His resurrection!

How important is love?  Perhaps no where in all of scripture can we find just how important it is as in these words  “If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing” (1 Cor. 13:2).

The second part of (Gal.6:10) has much more ramifications. Our own brothers and sisters in the faith are the ones we especially do good to.

Recently I had a talk with a dear brother who has done some real solid works for the Lord for many years. He was upbeat despite the fact that he was sincerely struggling on the financial front. But I thought “how is it that none of the brothers and sisters knew about this, or if they did, how did they turn their backs?”  We all can face tough times but it is at those times when we as true  brothers and sisters should step up to the plate and do something if it is within our power.

We should  look out for our own,as our brother’s and sister’s keeper.  It can be like the old saying “too close to the forest to see the trees”. Again, it’s the basics of Christ’s love that we can sometimes overlook.

 Let’s look at some specific ways we can do good to our brethren.

1) When a brother or sister asks us a question or drops a line to say hello(via email, or voice message, or whatever)  we make a good effort to get back to them in a reasonable time. Again, our Lord said  “Do unto others whatever you would like them to do unto you”(Matt. 7:12)  If you want to be ignored, then  –ignore.  But we shouldn’t be a hypocrite and expect answers or responses  when we don’t give them.

2) Check in now and then with your brothers and sisters of the faith. We shouldn’t expect them to come to us always. Our own members of the faith are the ones who have at least made the profession of Christ, so we should hold them up in our remembrance  and reach out when possible.

3) If we know their profession, and we have a need of that service, let’s use them for it,as opposed to calling someone outside our faith. I sure wish our own churches would have a church directory showing the different occupations of the members.

4) Of utmost importance, let’s never forget that sharing of the word and bible study with our brethren is extremely important. Share the word when possible and learn together. We must have knowledge as we know our Lord said  “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6)  One of the most sad things to see, is when a bro or sis want’s to learn something from a fellow bro or sis in the faith, and they are ignored!  Oh what a true travesty! 

 The bible says “be angry and sin not”  (Eph 4:26) And this is describing me right now. I just can’t for the life of me, comprehend how someone would see that as acceptable to the Lord.  Our knowledge should be shared.  “Freely you have received, freely give” (Matt. 10:8)  Why should it be coveted by us? It’s like “I have my knowledge,  you go get your own, don’t bother me”. I couldn’t look myself in the mirror if I was ignoring  my brethren in the faith, who would inquire of me.

5)  As we are nearing the very last days. Our reach-outs to our brethren must be accelerated. As we have shown many times in this blog, our Lord pronounced that the Elijah message would be His last. Let’s get that out there to our people.

6) Be a “great” person to our brethren. What do I mean?  “But he that is greatest among you, will be your servant” (Matt.23:11)  We must have the mind set that we are to “serve” and not be aloof and have others serve us. Translated in practical advice, it means we look to help where we can.

7) Last and most importantly, we strive to show kindness and concern for our brethren in our correspondence. We show –Christian love.

May our ever seeing Lord guide you and keep you always, my beloved brethren(which always means sisters too).

What “Law” is spoken of in Galatians?

May 22, 2010

Many Christians today are using the word “law” said by  Paul in Galatians  out of context. We know that once we have the “spirit of truth” the Holy Spirit , we are guided to all truth. It is the job of the Holy Sprit to guide us and help us “see” what His holy word says. If we believe in false interpretations of His word, we open ourselves up to other deceits.

In the beginning of Galatians, Paul starts right out in  (Gal.1:6) ” I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel–which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.”As can be seen Paul was not happy with the false doctrines going around (so quickly after the birth of Christianity). The Devil wasted no time getting distortions and falsehoods planted.

Paul went on to explain he was “extremely zealous” for His people  and their “traditions”prior to his conversion. We know from Jesus’ many rebukes to the pharisees and other religious people, that “these” people were NOT practicing the true obeying of His Holy Ten commandments. Rather, they were excelling in cumbersome and man induced rules and regulations. They were also VERY strict in obeying the Mosiac laws, as Paul was.  Jesus saw right through their hypocrisy. For if they had truly kept the Holy 10, Jesus would have NEVER rebuked them! And Jesus was the ONLY one who could have rebuked them because He NEVER broke them. To be an example of our Christian walk.

Then in chapter two, Paul gives us our first BIG CLUE, what Paul has in mind in discussing the “law” further on. In (gal 2:3) he says “NOT even Titus, who was with me, was compelled to be circumcised, even though he was a Greek. This matter arose because some false brothers had infiltrated our ranks to spy on the ‘freedom’ we have in Christ Jesus and to make us ‘slaves’. ”  ok, let’s see what was just said. First, Paul mentions “circumcision” then he says NOT to be slaves again. Now, what “law” had circumcision? It was the Mosiac law! The Holy 10 had no such requirement.

Next, Paul tells how he imparted his beliefs that Peter was practicing prejudice against people who were NOT obeying the “Mosiac laws”. In this case, Peter seperating himself from uncircumcised believers.  Paul clearly said that this was “wrong”. Then Paul says in (Gal 2:15) ” We (true believers in Christ) who are Jews by birth, and not Gentile sinners, know that a man is NOT justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ” Again it is plainly obvious “what” law Paul is speaking about. Infact Paul further seperates the “law” vs. the “Moral law”  later when he says in (1 Cor.7:19) “Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the KEEPING of the Commandments is what matters.”

Can we start to see clearly “which” law Paul has in mind? Paul concludes chapter two with ” I did not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the ‘law’, Christ died for nothing.”  In other words, all the rituals, ceremonies and sacrifices one did and obeyed should have “saved” that individual, hence no need for Christ. But Paul states the ‘law’ meaning Mosiac laws could NOT do this. They only foreshadowed Christ.

 In chapter three, Paul continues in his same line of thinking about the “Mosiac law” and NOT the holy 10. (Gal 3:1-2) “You foolish Galatians!….I would like to learn one thing from you: Did you receive the Holy Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard?” Here again Paul points out the ‘law’ was no longer the way to Christ  and whereby the Holy Spirit comes from. Then later in (3:24) “So the law was put in place to lead us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.” This was SO CLEARLY shown by the temple curtain being split in two upon Christ’s death. That symbolized the end of animal sacrifices as Christ had become the “once and for all” sacrifice for our sins.  The very  temple  where they also practiced many of their Mosiac rituals and ceremonies.

In concluding it can defintely be said Galatians teaches us that the “law” Paul speaks about is the Mosiac law. It would make no sense if Paul meant the Holy 10 Commandment Law, when discussing a Mosiac custom called circumcision. Additionally, can we honestly think we are “no longer under” the Law that says(among other things) murder, stealing, adultery is wrong? Paul would indeed be speaking NOT from the Holy Spirit if he was to teach this!

May Christ be with you and the Holy Sprit guide you in understanding His word.

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