Monday, July 13, 2009

Galatians 5:25-6:5 (Mind Your Own Business)

When Paul argues in Galatians that faith and grace—not the law or works—is the basis for salvation, he is not saying that the law or works are evil. He is not embracing a complete abandon of any standard of conduct. He is just arguing against any claim that the law imparts righteousness. Legalism says that what we do determines our standing before God, and that the job of a religious community is to govern each other.

Paul over and over again in all his writings argues that Christ’s work alone is enough for the salvation of any who turn to Him. We are in right standing before God as a result of what He has done, not anything we have or could do. Therefore, there is no reason for the community of faith to act as judges of each other. Instead, we are to love each other and help each other out. If someone is struggling with any sin, the role of the community is to gently help that person overcome, not judge.

However, there is a Godly standard of conduct as exemplified by Jesus. It is the duty of every Christian to always strive toward a behavior that is acceptable to God in their life. So, in true relationship with God, it is up to each believer to hold themselves to a standard of behavior. If we can hold each other accountable to a standard that we have ourselves set as a result of our relationship with God, then we will find the spiritual way to growing in Godliness.

The difference is between community and self-imposed standards. Basically, mind your own business and invite people you trust to help you out.

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