Galatians | Week 12
THE GOSPEL TRANSFORMS RELATIONSHIPS
In Galatians chapters 1 through 4, Paul speaks to the Galatian church about concepts like freedom from the law and faith in Christ. In chapters 5 and 6, Paul pivots towards application. In chapter 5, he is talking about YOU. How you live in the spirit and see fruit produced in your life. In chapter 6, he is talking about US – how the gospel transforms our relationships and how we should treat each other. Jesus himself says in Matthew 22:40 that the entire law hangs on two commandments, to love God and love each other. In dying on the cross, being raised from the dead, and sending His spirit, Jesus shows us that this is how the gospel transforms relationships. The Jesus law isn’t about looking out for number one, kicking people when they’re down, or manipulating relationships. Its’ about finding people who are hurting and broken and helping them up. Now that we’ve been set free from the burden of sin and death, we need to keep our eyes open for other people who look heavy. And we need to help them in gentleness and humility. It’s our LOVE for one another that demonstrates to the world that we are His disciples.
The Bible tells us in many verses that we are to demonstrate our love for one another in several ways. We are to encourage, submit, accept and forgive one another. In this way we focus less on our own needs and focus instead on the needs of our brothers. Are you displaying the kind of other-focused attitudes found in the one another verses? This week be aware of the way opportunities you have to lift the burdens of your brothers.
Questions for Reflection
At the end of Chapter 5 Paul tells the Galatians not to be conceited, not to compare themselves with others either through the lens of arrogance or jealousy. We all need to remain humble to do this. CS Lewis once said, “Humility isn’t thinking less of yourself it’s thinking about yourself less.” See if you respond in these situations in a self-focused through pride.
- When criticized, do I get angry/judgmental—and attack back, or do I get discouraged and defensive—make excuses, or give in?
- Do I tend to pick arguments, or do I avoid confrontation?
- Do I tend to get very down on individuals and groups of people or embarrassed/intimidated around certain groups or people?
If you find yourself responding like this, how can you be less focused on yourself, and more other-focused in your responses?
Take a look at the “one another” verses in the bible. Notice there are things we should be doing for one another as well as things not to do to one another. Look for areas you might want to do more of this week, for example, how can you encourage someone who needs it?