Let’s look at five verses in Galatians. Galatians 6:1-5.
“Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Galatians 6:1.
Just a small section of scripture that Paul mentions to show how we’re to relate to one another. We have a tendency to compare ourselves to others rather than see ourselves in Christ, and that hinders our relationships.
In this first verse, we’re reminded that we all make mistakes, we all sin, we’re all in need of mercy and grace from Christ. Basically, we’re all in the same boat spiritually speaking. We should keep that in mind when we have to confront another with their sin.
It’s interesting that Paul refers to the readers as “you who are spiritual” when his whole premise is that none of us are above another. I’m not sure if he’s trying to add a little sarcasm to the mix or appeal to someone’s vanity.
Actually, I think he’s reminding them in a subtle way that if they are following Christ and truly have His righteousness, then they should understand how important it is to approach another in their sin with mercy and grace. And thus he adds the note to consider one’s self, “lest you also be tempted.” We should never become prideful that we’re truly trying to live as Christ would have us to, but we need to act with meekness in order to accomplish what Christ asks of us.
“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2.
Pretty straight forward, taken by itself. But to stay in the context, we sympathize with the issues others face as we have faced them as well. Therefore, we help others deal with problems and tribulations which the world throws at them.
These burdens are not the individual responsibilities that we all have which are specific to each one, but those things which affect us all and can be made lighter by sharing the load. Things that you would share with a friend. And this fulfills the law of Christ as He is the ultimate friend who walks through everything with us. Being there for our friends shows how much we are like Christ.
“For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.” Galatians 6:3.
Paul is now tying back in to what he said in verse one. We should always have a good, clear picture of who we are and whose we are. And that we are not better than any other human. All that we are or can ever hope to be comes from Christ and what He has done for us.
We can never be worthy as that would have to come from within us, and we have nothing on our own. But our worth is beyond measure because of how much God loves us and what He has done for us on the cross. That gives us great worth as well as all who are created in His image. And recognizing that helps us see our neighbor clearly.
“But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.” Galatians 6:4.
Sounds like someone taking pride in his own work. Examine your own work and have a reason for rejoicing. But that seems a bit out of sorts with the context.
I think Paul was placing the emphasis on “own” work, not the work itself. As in, look at what you are doing in response to what Christ has said rather than comparing yourself or your work to that of others. Then you will be able to see if you are doing what Christ has for you to do, which is a definition of success and a measure of a person.
As I mentioned at the beginning, we tend to compare ourselves with others. It comes in all shapes and forms, but none of it is helpful. We forget that we may be walking in the same direction, but each one’s path is different. The standards for success for one may not work for another.
I confess, I have had to deal with this repeatedly in my life in regard to the ministry. I went to school with many other ministers, and it is so easy and so tempting to gauge the success of my ministry and walk with Christ by how it compares to others. And the problem is, we always see success in others’ lives and ministries and not in our own. That should tell us we’re using the wrong standards.
Our success must be determined by how well we followed and executed the commands and wishes of our heavenly Father for us. Not by how our lives compare to others’. Jesus Himself tried to convey that idea when He gave the parables of the faithful stewards. Each steward was entrusted with a different amount of resources, and each was rewarded by how well they did with what they were given, not by how they compared to another. Paul reminds us we have to keep that idea in mind.
“For each one shall bear his own load.” Galatians 6:5.
Confirmation by Paul of what we’ve seen in these verses. We’ll be judged by what we did with what we were given, our “own load.”
So, how did we go from sharing others’ burdens to bearing our own load? The idea is understanding that while we each are individuals in Christ, we all have worth through Him, and we’re all walking the paths He gives us, to Him. And knowing that, we aren’t threatened by helping our fellow travelers with their burdens along the way. We know we’ll be rewarded by Him for how we obeyed Him, not how we compare with others.
Walk in obedience. Walk in who you are in Christ. And don’t be afraid to help others along the way when you have opportunity.
Do you know Jesus? Do you have a personal relationship with Him? According to scripture, all anyone must do is recognize their sin condition, realize that Christ died to pay for that sin, and ask Him to save them from it. Salvation is a gift of grace we receive by faith. Meet Him today! Contact me at email@example.com if you need more information.
Thanks for stopping by! Please feel free to comment and let me know what you think!