Galatians 6:7-10 (NIV)
7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
False teachers were at it again…this time at churches in the Galatian territory, a southern province of Rome. Commentators put the writing of this letter by the apostle Paul at around 51-57 A.D.
The main offenders were called Judaizers. These were Jewish Christians who believed that the ceremonial practices of the OT law were still binding on the NT church. Of course this was not true. To borrow a phrase of the apostle Paul, the old law was “written on tablets of stone,” while the new law of Spirit was “written on the hearts of man.”
This faction was, among other things, still teaching circumcision which we know to be of no importance under the law of grace. We know this to be true by a number of verses including (1 Corinthians 7:19) where it says “Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. Keeping God’s commandments is what matters.“
Nevertheless, there were some in the churches who needed a clearer understanding of the new gospel, and for others which may have been led astray by believing it. This brings us to our passage for today.
Paul makes things very clear from the very beginning here. In (V 7) he states that God and His commands cannot be mocked or ridiculed by man. All people will get the reward they deserve by their beliefs and deeds, whether good or bad. We understand and use this term often, even today…”we reap what we sow!”
In the next verse, (V 8), things are made a bit more specific. If we choose to satisfy the sinful nature, we will be paid back by spiritual destruction. After all, we died to such desires when we gave our lives to Christ, (Romans 6:2). But the one who sows to please the Lord will receive eternal life from Him.
The apostle adds some encouragement to the brothers and sisters in (V 9), by exhorting them to continue to do good by obeying the gospel of Christ, ignoring the unscrupulous teachers among them. By doing so, they (and we today), will “reap a harvest” when the time of Judgment comes.
Concluding his thoughts in (V 10), Paul has one simple thought. He tells the Christians there to do good to all people, and especially so to their family of fellow believers. After all, isn’t it these people we expect to spend eternity with? We had best learn how to get along with and enjoy them now!
May God bless all of you as you seek the truth, and to walk with the Lord each day!
Refs: ~“The NIV Study Bible, copyright 1995, Zondervan” ~ Google ~ biblegateway.com ~