Verse of the Day 6-30-22

You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.
So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Galatians 5:13-18

Paul declared that Christ has called believers into freedom, and now he clarifies that this freedom is not intended as an excuse for sinful behavior. Instead, believers are to serve (or be a slave to) one another. Paul presents a startling paradox: freedom is given to Christians so that they may be slaves to each other.

The theme of Christians living in love is prevalent throughout Paul’s writings. The reason love is so important for a Christians ethic is stated clearly in Galatians 5:14: love fulfills the entire law. Paul is not contradicting his previous teaching about the law. Previously, the Galatians were being warned that if they submitted to circumcision, they would face judgement. Paul is emphasizing the freedom the Galatians have that should express itself in love by serving others.

Paul referenced the flesh in verse 13; now he contrasts the power of the flesh and the Spirit. This section clarifies the meaning of being called to freedom and living in love. When believers walk by the Spirit, they will have victory over the flesh. Being led by the Spirit leads to the truth that there is no threat from the law.

Today’s Bible Readings:

2 Kings 17:1-18:12, Acts 20, Psalm 148:1-14 and Proverbs 18:6-7

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