If a fellow believer is caught sinning, we are to guide them back towards the light of the Lord in love (John 13:34), as we ourselves may need guidance in the future. All we need do is to point them back towards God after confronting them about their sin, but we must be humble, not proud when confronting. It is not my place as a believer to pass judgement, but that doesn’t mean I cant see sinful behaviour for what it is based on the teachings of God in His Word. I have to learn that discernment and humbly work only to help other believers find their way back to Christ.
If we are to rejoice in our own work, we must also accept our own failings and failures. Perhaps on this inner reflection we will be able to then remain humble, encourage others in their trials, and realize our need for a saviour, because doing it alone without the intercession of the Lord is impossible. In all things I should be asking myself “Am I putting myself first, or am I putting God first?”.
We must draw our eyes and hearts away from the desires of this world that go against God’s plan for us, and allow the Lord to grow and overflow within us and our lives. God is our provider, so how are we stewarding His gifts and provision? Are we re-focusing them back towards the Lord, or are we hoarding them for ourselves? “If I can’t take it with me, I’m not going” is a saying on a sign that many people hang in a basement or garage, half joke, half reality. Our flesh wants to focus on its own desires of the things found in this world, and when we die, we have the reward of dying on earth forever with our “stuff” but with the gift of God we lose the world, but gain eternal life!
Paul offers encouragement to the readers, that despite how they are feeling, it is the right thing to keep on acting in the ways of the Lord even through trying times, or when the task seems to be fruitless. It can be so hard to willingly and lovingly continue to act out of the love, forgiveness, and mercy of God – especially when those we interact with seem to intentionally give the opposite responses to us. How do you forgive someone unrepentant? How do you love someone who intentionally causes you pain? Only through God’s grace can we act in His ways.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” 2 Cor 5:17
It is not by our actions we are adopted into God’s household, nothing we do would be enough to earn our place there. It is only through Christ’s actions we are accepted (v.15). It is though our flaws, failings, imperfections, and sinful nature that God is glorified. It is only through this grace that His will is done. He works in us despite us, not because of us.
Fun resource: The Bible project has a great infographic for Galatians
1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. 2 Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. 3 For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. 4 But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. 5 For every man shall bear his own burden. 6 Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things. 7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 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. 9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith. 11 Ye see how large a letter I have written unto you with mine own hand. 12 As many as desire to make a fair shew in the flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for the cross of Christ. 13 For neither they themselves who are circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh. 14 But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world. 15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. 16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God. 17 From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus. 18 Brethren, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. Amen.