Saturday, September 3, 2011

Galatians 5: What Not to Do, and What To Do

My Dear Galatians, This is the fifth and next to last section of my exhortation to you to continue in the Freedom of the Spirit and Forsake the Slavery of the Law, now listen up......

Wait, who is that waving his hand in the back? You know I can't see too well........Is that you Gaius? What's that you say? "Give me a for instance"? "Tell me what this means in real life?"

Well.....okay. Don't get circumcized. The judaizers insist that All Good Christians Are Circumcized. (And attend Temple every Sabbath. And tithe. And abstain from alcohol and meat sacrificed to idols. And bow and scrape like Spartan slaves before their learned men. Give them an inch of your freedom, and they will make you bear their burdens for a mile.) Never mind that the Law they profess to know says it should happen eight days after birth. True, our Father Abraham circumcized his entire household. Yet many righteous gentiles since then, both in Scripture and outside of it, have lived under The Blessing without cutting their flesh. And....oh, there I go teaching again when you just wanted an example. So - don't get circumcized. It's like telling God "by gum I DO need to obey the law and everything in it or else you will scowl at me and say 'Bad, bad servant!' and beat me, sell me or cast me out into the street."

My brothers, it is they who will be cast out if they persist in denying grace and the Spirit and sonship. As for you - if you insist on slavery, God will not deny you. The Father did not stop the Prodigal. So as for something specific you shouldn't do: don't get circumcized.

And're welcome. It hurts like, well, the place the judaizers are going to. As to what you should do - go, bear fruit. What's that, you say you need a wife first? No, not that kind of fruit....not that there's anything wrong with that.....oy vay, Gaius!....I mean bear fruit in the Spirit. When you pray, ask the Spirit to pray with you and for you. When you read and hear The Word, ask the Spirit for understanding. When you speak to others, ask the Spirit to bless others through you. Throughout your day, listen, follow, rejoice, serve, love. Co-operate with the Spirit as He breathes faith and love through you. And when you are lying on your bed tonight, in silence, just you and the Spirit of God, thank Him for being your constant companion and the seal of your inheritance as a son of God. O, we are rich men, you and I, Gaius.


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