Fulfill the Law of Christ

Galatians 6:1-2 ESV

“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”

Caught in Sin

If a brother or a sister in Christ is caught in (discovered, seen committing, or trapped in) sin or is overtaken (overwhelmed, conquered, defeated, or beaten down) by sin (a false step, a falling away, a wrongdoing), perhaps by surprise, and perhaps not, or perhaps due to negligence to put up proper safeguards, we who are spiritual should restore him or her.

Now, let me stop there. First off, I would recommend that this be done male with male and female with female unless you are married to the person, or unless you are a person who struggles with same sex attraction. And this is for propriety’s sake as well as protection for you, especially if you are married so that there is no danger of being led into adultery.

And who are the spiritual? They are not merely those professing faith in Jesus Christ, but they are those who are living what they say they believe. They are those who are walking according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. They are those who are daily dying with Christ to sin and to self and who are walking in obedience to his commands.

They are not perfect people, but they are not walking in sin. They are not following the ways of this evil world. They are not those who are also caught in, conquered by, and defeated by sin. They are those who are walking in holiness and righteousness and whose practice it is to say “No!” to ungodliness and fleshly lusts, and who are living self-controlled, upright, and godly lives while they are waiting for the Lord’s soon return.

For, we can’t help others out of their sin and help restore them if we are caught in sin ourselves, or if we are “struggling,” as some say, often meaning “regularly giving into” sin. A drowning person is not going to be able to help another drowning person. And even a short-lived ex-addict to sin is not the person to help another addict out of his sin. Chances are pretty good the one will bring the other down with him.

Repentance Required

And to be able to restore a fellow Christian who is caught in or who is overtaken by sin back to the condition of walking according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh, that person must be repentant. And that doesn’t mean just sorry for his sin or sorry that he got caught. And repentance isn’t a mere confession of sin, especially if the one caught in sin is one who habitually does the “sin, confess, sin, confess, sin, confess” sin cycle.

Repentance involves godly sorrow whereby the person is genuinely sorrowful over his sin and desires to be restored to a proper relationship with the Lord. Repentance also involves forsaking sins, cutting them out of your life, leaving them behind you to now follow Jesus in obedience to his commands. It is a spiritual U-turn. And it involves cutting out of your life all paths you have taken to sin, too, closing all doors that might still be open.

In other words, we can’t restore someone who doesn’t want to be restored. And please know this, many addicts are good at faking sorrow over sin and of making false promises to change and are good at even faking change when change has not happened and when the sin continues. So, someone who is steeped in sin and who habitually makes false confessions of sin and false promises to change will not change until their hearts change.

So, probably this passage of Scripture is not meant to include those who are deliberately and habitually on a sinful course and who have been offered help multiple times toward restoration but who faked it only to keep on living in their sin and lying about it in order to cover it up. Probably the intention here is for someone who is walking the walk but then had a failure and so needs to be restored back to a right relationship with the Lord.

So, watch out that you don’t let those who have no intention of changing drag you down and into their drama. And watch out that they don’t drag you back into sin, too. For, those who are living in addiction to sin are usually manipulative people who will try to lead you astray so that you don’t confront them in their sin but so you join them in their sin.

Restoring Them

And when you do restore fallen believers back to a right relationship with the Lord, if they are willing, and if they are being honest, and if they are truly repentant, and if they are not resisting you but are cooperating with you, you should be doing so in a spirit (attitude, temperament) of gentleness (gentle strength, fairness) but not weakness.

If you attempt to restore someone who is not cooperative, but who is resisting you, you may have to put on the armor of God and be a little more aggressive like Jesus was with the Pharisees. But you are not going to be able to restore those who don’t want to be restored, even if they claim that they do want restoration. Time will tell if they meant it or not. And I am not saying to give up on them, but to be wise and discerning.

Bearing One Another’s Burdens

I probably should have begun with this first because if we are not doing this we won’t even care if a brother or a sister in Christ falls into sin. We have to first be people who are walking in obedience to our Lord in holiness and righteousness, and then we are to be those who grieve over the sins of our fellow Christians and who pray to God for their restoration.

But in today’s modern Christian culture, at least here in America, Christians are being taught to mind their own business, to “stay in your own lane,” and to not confront anyone with the truth of the gospel or with his sin lest he be offended and not want to come back to the social gatherings of what is falsely called “church.” And so Christian is not restoring Christian.

So, before we can even begin to think about this subject of one Christian helping to restore another Christian who was caught in sin, we have to follow the teachings of Scripture about how we, as the family of God, are to interact with one another, and how we are to care about each other, and how we are to care deeply if one of us falls into sin.

And we have to be accepting of and teaching the true gospel and not this cheap grace gospel which gives permission for Christians to keep living in deliberate and habitual sin under the guise of God’s grace. We have to be believers in and those who practice dying daily to sin and to self and walking in holiness and righteousness and in obedience to our Lord.

For, Jesus didn’t come into this world just to forgive us our sins so we would now go to heaven when we die. He died on that cross to put our sin to death so that we would die with him to sin and so we would no longer be enslaved to sin, but so we would now be slaves of God and of his righteousness. This we must believe and we must put into practice. If we don’t, we don’t have eternal life with God.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Matt 7:21-23; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10]

Mary, Did You Know?

Songwriters: Greene Lee Rufus / Lowry Mark Alan

Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would save our sons and daughters?
Did you know that your baby boy
Has come to make you new?
This child that you delivered, will soon deliver you

Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know that your baby boy
Would one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy
Is heaven’s perfect Lamb?
That sleeping child you’re
Holding is the great, I Am

Mary, did you know?

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