Restoration in a spirit of gentleness.
Galatians 6 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. 2 Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. 5 For each one will bear his own load.
6 The one who is taught the word is to share all good things with the one who teaches him. 7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9 Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary. 10 So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.
11 See with what large letters I am writing to you with my own hand. 12 Those who desire to make a good showing in the flesh try to compel you to be circumcised, simply so that they will not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13 For those who are circumcised do not even keep the Law themselves, but they desire to have you circumcised so that they may boast in your flesh. 14 But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. 15 For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. 16 And those who will walk by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.
17 From now on let no one cause trouble for me, for I bear on my body the brand-marks of Jesus.
18 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen.
Paul says: Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. For us to fully understand what Paul is saying here we must first recognize that he is speaking to the church; to believers. So, it is if a person who has already confessed with their mouth the Lord Jesus and believed in their heart that God has raised Him from the dead; they have already become a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come; is caught in a trespass that they are to be restored. They are to be restored then to the new creation that they have become. They are not restored through condemnation and judgment, but in a spirit of gentleness. We should be gentle with each other recognizing we are all children of God; His beloved. Restoration though does not come through tolerance of or embracing the trespass, it comes through encouragment and exhortation to do what is right. Paul encouraged Timothy saying: reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction.(2 Timothy 4:2) In the text Paul says: each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. We may not be tempted by the same things as others. We tend to judge others differently than ourselves because we are not tempted in the same way so we do not understand why they would fall to that temptation. In James 1:14-15 it says: Each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. We are all tempted by our own lusts and desires. Temptation is not sin. It is the yielding to and fulfilling the lust of our flesh that is sin. When we encourage a fellow believer in order to restore them, we should keep in mind what Jesus says in Matthew 7:3-5: “Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” Restoration in a spirit of gentleness comes more easily when we recognize the gentleness it took for us to see clearly ourselves.
Paul says: Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. For each one will bear his own load. We are to bear one anothers burdens, yet each one will bear his own load. We can and should stand with and help people in difficult times. Bearing the burdens of others though does not take the responsibility to trust in Christ from them. The account of Simon of Cyrene in Mark 15:20-24 can help us to better understand how we should bear the burdens of others. It says: After they had mocked Him, they took the purple robe off Him and put His own garments on Him. And they led Him out to crucify Him. They pressed into service a passer-by coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene (the father of Alexander and Rufus), to bear His cross. Then they brought Him to the place Golgotha, which is translated, Place of a Skull. They tried to give Him wine mixed with myrrh; but He did not take it. And they crucified Him. Jesus was so weary; so physically drained from the abuse He suffered that He could not physically carry the weight of the cross. Simon carried it for Him, but Simon could only carry the cross to the “Place of a Skull.” There only Jesus could bear the load of the curse of sin for the world. In John 19:30, when Jesus was on the cross, with His final breath He cried out: “It is finished!” When we bear the burdens of others, we should carry them to the cross. There we should lay them down, allowing Jesus finished work of the cross to have it result. Each one must trust for themselves in the finished work of the cross.
Paul says: Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary. So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. We are to do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. Many today are so critical of the church that they criticize, judge and condemn other believers. They focus their efforts to do good on those who are outside of the church. In John 13:34-35 Jesus says: “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” If those who claim to be disciples of Jesus do not love one another, then the world will not know that they are His disciples. That is one of the greatest hindrances to the message and the spreading of the gospel today. The world does not know the disciples of Christ because they see the division in the church. 1 John 4:19-21 says: We love, because He first loved us. If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also. We love because He first loved us. We love others especially those who believe because they are brothers and sisters in Christ. If we say we love God, but hate the church, we are a liar.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen. May we be restored in a spirit of gentleness as a household of faith, through the finished work of the cross. Amen.