Paul Kretzmann Commentary - Galatians 6:6 - 6:10

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Paul Kretzmann Commentary - Galatians 6:6 - 6:10


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This Chapter Verse Commentaries:

The apostle urges unselfish service:

v. 6. Let him that is taught in the Word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.

v. 7. Be not deceived; God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

v. 8. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

v. 9. And let us not be weary in well-doing; for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

v. 10. As we have, therefore, opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

These single admonitions are not brought in as abruptly as might appear at first glance. Paul is still speaking of the life in the Spirit, which is opposed to all envious grudging. And he here voices a thought which he has emphasized also elsewhere: Let him that is taught in the Word communicate to him that teaches in all good things. He that is taught in the Word, either in the more restricted private and catechetical discussion or in the public instruction, in which the teacher expounds the Word of God before all, should communicate to, literally go shares with, the one that does the teaching, in all good things, not only in temporal support, but in all other benefits as well. They that preach the Gospel should live of the Gospel, 1Co_9:14. Thus the ministers, on their part, do not degrade their ministry to a mere business, especially since it is impossible to speak of adequate compensation in their case, and the parishioners, on their part, do not regard the money paid toward the minister's support as charity, but as the proper sharing of goods demanded by God.

Solemnly the warning sounds in this connection: Do not let yourselves be deceived; God will not be sneered at. For what a man sows, this he also reaps. He that sows on his own flesh will harvest from the flesh destruction; he that sows to the Spirit of the Spirit will harvest everlasting life. In connection with the obligation of gratitude which he has enjoined upon them, the apostle warns the Galatian Christians against harboring or entertaining any erroneous thoughts. For it is nothing but self-delusion if a person tries to convince himself that he believes in Christ and can comfort himself with regard to the mercy of God and the forgiveness of sins, and yet permits his flesh to rule with all its passions and evil lusts, disregarding all duties which the law of love imposes. For it is impossible to sneer at God with impunity. He will not be disregarded and despised. Although our gracious and merciful Father, He is also the holy and righteous God, whose vengeance will find all the workers of iniquity. If a person, therefore, reaps God's wrath and displeasure, temporal death, and eternal damnation, he has no one to blame but himself, since he sowed on his own flesh, since he served the lusts of his own evil nature. His harvest agrees with his sowing. Altogether different is the case of him that sows to the Spirit, that takes the proper care of the new man wrought in him through regeneration, that strives more and more to put on the new man, who after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Such a person will enjoy the harvest of eternal life. By the grace of God the present spiritual life will mature into the life of glory and in glory, where there is fullness of joy at the right hand of God forevermore. What an incentive to every Christian to walk in the Spirit and thus to obtain this harvest of joy!

Unwearied efforts should therefore characterize the life of the Christians, as the apostle writes: But in well-doing let us not become weary; for at the proper season we shall harvest if we do not become faint. In well doing we should not become weary, which not only includes the manifold deeds of charity, by which we have an opportunity to assist our neighbor in spiritual and temporal distress, but refers to the entire spiritual life of the Christian. In this the Christians should not become weary; they should not lose courage; they should not permit the obstacles to wear them out. Only he that remains faithful to the end, the same shall be saved. As soon as our spirit grows weary, then our body will also become faint. This we cannot afford to permit, for the harvest is promised only to such as do not become weary and faint. The harvest of satisfaction and joy in this world may still be connected with much labor and exertion, but if we persist to the end, without growing faint, our reward will be unspeakable fullness of bliss, an everlasting harvest of joy in the presence of our Lord and Savior.

The apostle concludes his admonition with another urgent call: Now, then, as we have time, opportunity, let us do good to all men, but most of all to them that are of the household of faith. Here and now, in proportion to the opportunity offered and afforded to us on all sides, we can and should do good. Now is the chance of the Christians, the most opportune time for sowing deeds of kindness. We do not know how soon the Day of Judgment may be coming. We should practice deeds of love toward our neighbor, we should be of assistance to him, no matter whether the trouble which is bothering him be of the body or of the spirit, our neighbor in this case being every person that is in need of our help, whether Jew or Gentile, friend or enemy, known or unknown, grateful or ungrateful. Only one distinction should we observe; we should give the preference to those that are of the household of faith. Our companions in faith, our fellow-Christians, are united with us by the most intimate bonds of fellowship. To their wants and needs we should, therefore, attend first of all, to them we should give assistance by preference. That is the great duty which our living and walking in the Spirit places upon us.