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  • Ethos Church

April 3, 2023


Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.

Thought:

The legalist is not interested in bearing burdens. Instead, he adds to the burdens of others (Acts 15:10). This was one of the sins of the Pharisees in Jesus’ day: “They crush people with unbearable religious demands and never lift a finger to ease the burden” (Matthew 23:4). The legalist is always harder on other people than he is on himself, but the Spirit-led Christian demands more of himself than he does of others.


Paul is concluding his letter to the Galatian churches by showing that when people try to live by the law, it prompts them to compare and compete with others. However, when they embrace grace, it results in becoming a compassionate gospel community. In other words, life in Christ by the power of God's Spirit is not meant to be lived alone but in a family of believers. Life is a team sport! While we don’t want to impose rules on one another, we do want to encourage one another to mature, to set aside the flesh and all its toxic outcomes, and to walk in the Spirit. Why? Because this fulfills the law of Christ! This is one way that people will clearly see and experience the love of Christ lived out - as the local church restores and carries each other’s burdens.


Application:

1. What are the dangers of trying to carry your heavy burdens alone?


2. Ask God to show you someone who is struggling to manage a heavy burden that you can help shoulder. You may need to consider carefully some sacrifices you can make without neglecting your own responsibilities.

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  • Ethos Church
April 3 - April 7, 2023
 

Galatians 6 Overview

In Galatians 5, Paul called us personally to crucify the flesh and walk by the Spirit. Now, he’s helping us see how this personal reality with God creates communal reality with God – how gospel doctrine creates a gospel community. What God offers us in gospel doctrine is His never-ending love for the undeserving. What He offers us in gospel community is the continuing experience of that love embodied in a family of believers.


Galatians 6 begins describing how Spirit-led Christians serve one another by bearing each other's burdens. When the load one of us is hauling becomes too heavy, others step in to help. In other words, life in Christ by the power of God's Spirit is not meant to be lived alone but in a family of believers. The body of Christ – the church – functions only when the members work together for the common good. We are to do good to all people, especially to the family of believers...


So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith. Galatians 6:9-10

Paul encouraged the Galatians and he encourages us today to not give up doing good. Don't get tired of it, he writes. The harvest is coming! It’s a natural law – a man reaps what he sows. All that we do is either an investment in the flesh or an investment in the Spirit.


Paul now sums up his timeless message by writing in big letters that circumcision (legalism) does not matter, only being made a new creation by faith in Christ matters. Galatians 6:15 says “...What counts is whether we have been transformed into a new creation." While few believers today struggle with the issue of circumcision, we constantly battle other legalistic pressures. There is always the temptation to fall back into thinking we must follow certain rules to gain God’s approval. To this Paul says, “No! The spiritual life that pleases God (and satisfies our own souls) is being made new by the work of Christ on the cross.” We can boast only in that.


Warren Wiersbe said it this way: "What God the Father planned for you, and God the son purchased for you on the cross, God the Spirit personalizes for you and applies to your life as you yield to Him." In summary, Christ’s death on the cross freed us to become the people our Creator designed us to be. God intends for us to be vessels of His love as we live by the Spirit in gospel community. Together, He has called us to be ambassadors of His truth, justice, forgiveness, and hope. And get this: He gives us everything we need to do it!



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  • Ethos Church

March 31, 2023


But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.

Thought:

In the last section of Galatians 5, Paul explains how the Holy Spirit enables the believer to enjoy freedom in Christ.

  1. The Spirit enables us to overcome the flesh (Galatians 5:16-21, 24)

  2. The Spirit enables us to produce fruit (Galatians 5:22-23, 25-26)

We’ll look at the second - Producing Fruit. The characteristics that God wants in our lives are seen in the ninefold fruit of the Spirit. Paul began with love, because all of the other fruit really stems from love. When a person lives in love, then he experiences joy (an inward peace and sufficiency that is not affected by outward circumstances). Love and joy together produce peace. These first three qualities consider how we relate to God. The next three consider how we relate to people: patience or long-suffering (courageous endurance without quitting), kindness, and goodness (love in action). The final three qualities turn toward ourselves: faithfulness (dependability), gentleness (the right use of power and authority, power under control), and self-control (moderation and constraint).


Remember, the fruit of the Spirit is the change in our character that comes about because of the Holy Spirit’s work in us. We can know that we’re operating by the Spirit in this way: When the Spirit produces fruit, God gets the glory. We do not bear fruit for our own consumption; we bear fruit that others might be fed and helped and that Christ might be glorified. The flesh may manufacture “results” that bring praise, but the flesh cannot bear fruit that brings glory to God. In short, the secret is the Holy Spirit!


Application:

1. What are some of the ways you’ve performed works driven by pride or fear instead of bearing fruit?


2. What will walking by the Spirit involve for you today?

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