Pt 9 :: Church and fellowship.
This is my last post on Galatians and I just want to do a run through of what we have seen so far:
The Galatians and Christians today have one true Gospel, a Gospel that should be guarded and proclaimed. Paul has a testimony of not only his conversion but also the work of Christ in his life - he is committed to proclaiming Jesus Christ as savour and Lord - and so should we. Paul is not afraid to show discipline and wants the church to take responsibility in guiding, rebuking and loving the members of the church. The heart beat of Galatians pump out the truth of who we are in Christ and what are identity is - who are we living for? What justifies us - our works or what Jesus did on the cross? The law cannot save us. So what do we need to do? We need to walk in the Spirit and focus on Christ so that we see Him as better then anything else. But the story isnt over, we are not individuals but we are apart of a body - what does this look like?
Paul opens chapter 6 with talking about sin (v1). What happens when someone sins today in the church? Two things happen:
- We are shocked to think someone could do that - we are like the world with a magazine layout of a scandal that has exposures of the true story revealed - "SHOCKER, A Christian Sins..." ( 3 page spread inside)
- We elevate ourselves - "I would never do that"...
Think of times when you have heard about someone sinning, what do you think? If your anything like me your mind goes to - "Thats terrible, I would never do that". instantly we have elevated ourselves, believing we are better then they are. But the problem is, is that we sin. And the answer isnt to get proud and self-rightouse, the answer is to "restore him in a spirit of gentleness". This is the mark of the church.
It is good and right to be serious about sin and pointing out sin in our lives and others in order to be restored and to repent. The idea is not to crush the person but to restore. I have seen many christians, including myself be very zealous about these things but instead of restoring the person or having Grace in a situation they crush the person and in themselves they are proud and thankful that they are not like that sinner. There is a lack of Grace here and the Church should be the place where Grace is most exercised.
Look at some of the attributes of the Church that Paul describes:
- Having a spirit of gentleness
- Bear one anothers burdens
- Not growing weary of doing good
- Do good to everyone
Imagine if we live like this not just on a Sunday, but everyday. Aiming to have our words dripping with Grace and in order to restore our brothers and sisters. Its good and right to rebuke sin, but not if its out of our proud and self rightousness - if it is, we will only destroy the person we are talking to and our hearts will just be hard.
We are sowers and what we sow we will reap. Therefore we need to sow in the spirit, sow in serving and loving in order to reap those things and to build up the church. The church isnt about you or your wants, its not about being the best at music or teaching or not sinning. The church is about Christ and about the other people around you. In light of it all, Galatians is anchored in what Christ did for the church on the cross in order that we may be an example of showing Grace and love to the body of Christ.
Thank you for reading some of my thoughts on Galatians, I know that there is so much more in Galatians to dig into but I think that would require more then 9 posts! I would encourage you to read through Galatians and see how amazing Jesus is and how He is using the church to shine this truth.
You can read all of "A glance at Galatians" series below:
A Glance at Galatians: