Paul encourages his listeners to invest their lives in truth. We reap what we sow. If we seek teachers who flatter and entertain us, that is what we will harvest. God is not mocked. He knows what we seek.
Chapter 1: Paul introduced two of his three key themes: 1) his apostolic authority and 2) the gospel of justification by faith alone. Paul claimed you can recognize the true gospel by its substance (grace based on the cross of Jesus Christ); its source (divine revelation).
Chapter 2: Paul argued he learned the gospel through revelation from Jesus Christ. He reviewed his biography to prove that he had no chance to learn the gospel from the other human beings. Yet the other apostles confirmed he preached the same gospel.
Chapter 3-4: Paul gives five persuasive arguments for justification by faith alone.
Chapter 5: Paul encouraged them to stand firm in the gospel and then gave a series of four exhortations.
In this final section from 5:13 to the end, Paul gives a series of four exhortations, closing with his final thoughts in 6:11-18.
- Galatians 5:13-24—Paul exhorts them not to use freedom as an excuse to indulge in sin.
- Galatians 5:25-6:5—Paul exhorts them to humility and loving others.
- Galatians 6:6-8—Paul exhorts them to invest in the truth.
- Galatians 6:9-10—Paul exhorts them to pursue doing what is good.
6Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. 7Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8For 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. 9And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. – Galatians 6:6-10
- Galatians 6:6 is not an exhortation to support teachers financially. That doesn’t fit the context.
- My rough translation of Galatians 6:6: The one who is taught the gospel that consists in all good things is to hold those good things in common with the one who teaches the gospel.
- Galatians 6:6-7 work together: Embrace the gospel when a good teacher teaches it to you and do not be deceived by a false gospel.
- Paul encourages listeners is embrace the gospel no matter who teaches it, and not to be deceived by false teachers.
- Everyone needs to understand what the Bible says well enough to recognize when someone teaches something contrary to it.
- If I seek teachers who plant truth, that is what I will harvest in my life.
- If I seek teachers who entertain me and make me feel good about myself but fail to teach the truth, then that is what I will harvest.
- False teachers eventually give themselves away. Their lifestyle will reveal that they are not running toward God.
- The telltale sign is false teacher teaches they sow and reap the works of the flesh. They tell us what our sinful selves want to hear and that will eventually bring strife and discord in the church.
- Let us not lose heart in pursuing that with is morally beautiful. In due time, if we don’t give up, we will reap the harvest of eternal life.
- Paul’s final exhortation is: while we have the opportunity (in other words in this life) live out the Golden Rule, especially to the household of faith.
11See with what large letters I am writing to you with my own hand. 12It is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh who would force you to be circumcised, and only in order that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13For even those who are circumcised do not themselves keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh. 14But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. 15For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. 16And as for all who walk by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God. 17From now on let no one cause me trouble, for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus. 18The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers. Amen. – Galatians 6:11-18
- Paul typically dictated his letters to a scribe. Here he picks up the pen to write with his own hand.
- His final point is: embrace the truth.
- The Judaizers want you to seek the Law so that other Jews won’t persecute them for associating with you. They boast in how many they win to law-keeping.
- In contrast, Paul boasts in teaching the gospel.
- Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision matters for salvation.
- Paul began this letter, with grace and peace from God the Father and he closes it with the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.