Galatians 6:1-6 NCV
The Character of God is restoring; The beginning, Part 2
Paul begins Galatians 6 with gentle advice and a warm and inviting tone. He begins by reminding them they are his brothers and sisters in Christ. Those terms evoke a feeling of family and invites them to live in such a way as to care for each other’s needs. Paul could have said, this is important, ‘so listen up,’
Instead, he appealed to their feelings.
Galatians 6:1-6 tells us, “Brothers and sisters, if someone in your group does something wrong, you who are spiritual should go to that person and gently help make him right again.” Then, in the same breath, Paul issues a mild warning in Galatians 6:2, when he says, “But be careful, because you might be tempted to sin, too.”
The truth about the Apostle Paul is that he is a textbook case for a master communicator. Paul was a master defender of the faith. He not only spoke to the churches in the regions he visited, he followed up with letters. We know from Acts 22 that Paul was born a Roman Citizen which afforded him certain rights and privileges (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_apologetics). He was a Pharisee who spent his life studying Hebrew scripture. Because of his background he had the opportunity to speak to Governors and Kings.
We know from the book of Acts that:
-Acts 24 Paul spoke before Governor Felix in Caesarea
-Acts 25, Festus became the new Roman Governor and Paul spoke to him
-Acts 25:11, Paul asked to speak before Caesar
-Acts 26 Paul defended himself before King Agrippa
-Acts 27 Paul sets sail for Rome
-Acts 28 Paul in Rome lived in a home and people could come see him but he was guarded by a soldier.
According to various discussions in the book of Acts, none of the officials Paul spoke before could find substantial charges to level against Paul.*
In my opinion, none of them could ‘out argue’ Paul. In Galatians 6:2-6, Paul argues:
“By helping each other with your troubles, you truly obey the law of Christ. If anyone thinks he is important when he really is not, he is only fooling himself. Each person should judge his own actions and not compare himself with others. Then he can be proud for what he himself has done. Each person must be responsible for himself. Anyone who is learning the teaching of God should share all the good things he has with his teacher.”
Each verse in this section presents a clear step by step argument. He clearly told them:
-help each other
-judge your own actions and don’t compare yourself with others
-it is honorable to be responsible for yourself
-share the good news you learn with your teacher (and others)
In a nutshell, Paul outlined ‘good Christian rules to live by’. Paul was gently helping those who had or might inadvertently miss the mark. Remember in verse 2 Paul warned them to be careful lest they should sin. He was ever so carefully helping them see what their own attitude should be toward each other.
With every step and every action, Paul was helping the churches in Galatia learn how to live and be restored in Jesus.
See, Paul knew that one of the characteristics of God was restoration. Because of that, he knew God not only wants us to be restored, He wants us to help others to be restored. Paul knew in order for that to happen, they needed to understand that level of restoration occurs when we do not judge others.
The opposite is true as well.
God restores us without judgement. Our restoration is free and clear. Jesus paid the full price. We do not need to be judged by others.
This section of scripture provided a personal lesson for me (and maybe for you). If you have been judged, take heart. God is in the business of restoration. God wants us to share the good news of love and restoration with others so they too can be fully restored in Christ.
That is the God we serve. He forgives fully and restores completely, and if God deems it ‘true’ so should everyone.
Today’s Spiritual Practice is: be restored
Paul wrote in Romans 3:23 that all have sinned and fallen short. Be restored. Whenever God gives you the opportunity, tell others about God’s restoring power in their lives.
In Jesus, Deborah
*It is believed Paul was martyred around 67 A.D. by Nero. That was about the same time Peter was crucified.