Day 20: Galatians 6:11-18

11 Notice what large letters I use as I write these closing words in my own handwriting.
12 Those who are trying to force you to be circumcised want to look good to others. They don’t want to be persecuted for teaching that the cross of Christ alone can save. 13 And even those who advocate circumcision don’t keep the whole law themselves. They only want you to be circumcised so they can boast about it and claim you as their disciples.
14 As for me, may I never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. Because of that cross, my interest in this world has been crucified, and the world’s interest in me has also died. 15 It doesn’t matter whether we have been circumcised or not. What counts is whether we have been transformed into a new creation. 16 May God’s peace and mercy be upon all who live by this principle; they are the new people of God.
17 From now on, don’t let anyone trouble me with these things. For I bear on my body the scars that show I belong to Jesus.
18 Dear brothers and sisters, may the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.

Think: In Paul’s closing statements he makes sure he leaves his readers with the most important thing possible--A lot of Jesus.

In verse 14, Paul highlights Jesus and what He has done by saying, “As for me, may I never boast about anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Paul traveled most of the known world. He planted tons of churches.  He shared the message of Jesus with millions of people. But he chose to brag about only one thing: What Jesus had done for the world!

As we finish our study of this ancient letter together, our hope is that you have a BIGGER picture of what God has done for you at the cross.

What would it look like for your life to boast about what Jesus did at the cross?

What are 2 things that you learned about God, His plan, or yourself throughout this study?


Day 19: Galatians 6:1-10

1 Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. 2 Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. 3 If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.
4 Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. 5 For we are each responsible for our own conduct.
6 Those who are taught the word of God should provide for their teachers, sharing all good things with them.
7 Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. 8 Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit. 9 So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. 10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.

Think: It’s so easy to simply shake our heads and judge when we see someone walking down the wrong path. We often feel superior.  Paul is saying that in our new freedom in Jesus, that is no longer acceptable behavior.

We are supposed to gently and humbly help people back onto the right path.  

Have you ever been caught being judgmental and feeling superior to other Jesus followers?

Ask God to eliminate that attitude and replace it with an attitude of gentleness and humility.

Day 18: Galatians 5:13-26

13 For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. 14 For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you are always biting and devouring one another, watch out! Beware of destroying one another.
16 So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. 17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. 18 But when you are directed by the Spirit, you are not under obligation to the law of Moses.
19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!
24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. 25 Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. 26 Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.

Think: This is a vital passage in understanding Paul’s thinking in this letter.  Many Galatians and many of us today ask the question: If there is no law to follow and it's all about trusting what Jesus has done, does mean we can do whatever we want? Can we do whatever feels good?

Paul’s answer is a very clear--no way!  

Instead of making a new list of laws, he encourages the Jesus followers in Galatia to think Christian-ly and become transformed by God the Holy Spirit.  It is only natural that when we follow Jesus and trust His work on the cross, the Holy Spirit produces attitudes and characteristics listed in verses 22-23.

Looking at the Fruit of the Spirit in verses 22-23, where do you feel like you are underdeveloped?

Ask God to enter into those areas that need to grow through a time of prayer.