Diffuse Reflections
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…and They’ll Know We are Christians by Our Love


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“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” ~ Galatians 6:2

Paul had just spent much of the preceding chapters scolding the Galatians for devoting themselves to the Mosaic Law, even to the point of circumcision. They had become confused: thinking that adherence to the Mosaic Law and its rituals were fundamental to gaining salvation.

In our text, Paul directs their attention away from the “Law of Moses” and points them to the “Law of Christ”. Moreover, he shows us that the “Law of Christ” is accomplished in an entirely different way than the “Law of Moses”. Paul argues throughout his letter to the Galatians that those under the Law of Moses are trapped by its rituals which do not deliver what they desire, namely, salvation. However, Grace (as a Gift of God) delivers Salvation from the outset. A Believer never has to work or perform any rituals to gain the Salvation of Jesus Christ. So, whereas those under the Mosaic Law work (futilely) to gain salvation; Believers gain Salvation (by Grace) to work (Ephesians 2:8-10).

And what is the work of a Believer? “Bear ye one another’s burdens”.

That is the crucial, essential point.

Too often, Believers of every era get sidetracked into ritualism. We somehow think that frequency in church is a sign of (or way to) Salvation. We get fooled into thinking that worship style (the type of liturgy, the type of songs we sing) shows our spirituality. We are fooled by dress codes and jargon; by causes and political affiliation.

“They helped every one his neighbour; and every one said to his brother, Be of good courage.” ~ Isaiah 41:6

But Paul tells us that the way to fulfill the Law of Christ does NOT depend on church attendance, liturgical style, music preference, attire, “christianese”, or voting record or anything other ritual. The way we fulfill the Law of Christ is by bearing each other’s burdens. If we want to be good Christians and honour God, then we should help each other.

To be clear, the church is not just a big soup kitchen or group therapy session. The primary function of the Church is assist Believers in conforming to the Will OF God to do the Work OF God in the context of the Scripture which reveals the Identity OF God. Therefore, service outside of this context is nothing more than do-good-ism. Service (Works), no matter how saintly, never saves us. However, as James explained, service (works) is the evidence of our salvation (James 2:14-26).

Therefore,

  • Instead of a church attendance award (if those exist)… let’s strive for a brother/sister assistance award (from God).
  • Next time we are so moved by the music in worship… let our hearts be so moved by the struggles of someone in need that we do whatever it takes to help them.
  • When we dress (up or down) for church, let us remember those who have nothing to “dress in” and help them out.
  • Next time we answer a greeting with “I am blessed”… let’s make sure we are also “blessings” to those around us.
  • When next we take time out exercise our civic duty by voting… let’s take some time out to exercise our Christian duty by visiting and ministering to the sick (hopefully more often than once every four years).

Rituals take us nowhere and leave us nowhere. It is the love we share (by our actions, not just words!) that makes people believe we are sincere. It is how much we sacrifice for each other that opens the door for the gospel message. It is by bearing each other’s burdens that we fulfill the Law of Christ.

Jesus put it this way:

“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” ~ John 13:34-35

Amen!

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We are one in the Spirit

We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord.
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord.
And we pray that all unity may one day be restored,
and they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love.
Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love.

We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand.
We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand.
And together we’ll spread the news that God is in our land.
and they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love.
Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love.

We will work with each other, we will work side by side.
We will work with each other, we will work side by side.
And we’ll guard each man’s dignity and save each man’s pride.
and they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love.
Yes, they’ll know we are Christians by our love.

2 Comments

  1. Pingback: Today I Need Some Gospel 112111 « Mennonite Preacher

  2. Pingback: On A Daily Basis « It Just Dawned On Me

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