Duty to the Weak
Being in Christ has so many blessings, and so is walking under the influence and control of the Holy Spirit. The outward proof of that is we manifest the “Fruit of the Spirit” in our daily lives. But such blessings do not come without responsibilities. There are burdens to bear. There is good to be done, we have a duty not only to the Lord but to our fellow Christians.
Illustration 1: Brotherly Love a Measure of Love to Christ
Our love to our brethren, is, as respects ourselves and our posterity, not only the evidence, but the measure of our love to Christ. He who does not have enough love in him for a man like himself, how can he love God, whose goodness, being above our knowledge, requires a transcendency in our knowledge? This is a sure rule, he that loves not a member of Christ loves not Christ; and he who grows in his love to his brethren grows likewise in his love to Christ.
Practical Bible Illustrations From Yesterday and Today.
I. Spiritual Brethren (Gal. 6:1)
A. The word “brethren” are found 229 times in the New Testament.
1. Brethren in modern language is “brother” and is a generic term for those “born again Christians”. Those who repented from their sins and received Christ as their personal Saviour.
2. Scripturally speaking, they are sons of God and therefore now a member of the family of God.
B. Overtaken in a fault
1. Spiritual children still can commit sin. It could be anybody in the church, regular member, Sunday School teacher, choir member, even Pastors, etc.
2. As we have studied earlier, there is no sinless perfection. As long as we are in the flesh, there will always be struggle within us, the war between the flesh and the Spirit.
3. We have a choice to walk either in the flesh or by the Spirit.
4. It’s a sad thing, but sometimes Christians can fall or commit sin.
5. The word overtaken comes from the Greek “prolambano” and means to be “caught by.” Sin always catches up with us. Moses said, … be sure your sin will find you out. (Numbers 32:23)
6. The lesson here in this verse is that of someone running from sin but sin, being faster, overtakes and catches him.
Illustration: What We Do Not Know
F.B. Meyer once said that when we see a brother or sister in sin, there are three things we do not know:
First, we do not know how hard he or she tried not to sin.
Second, we do not know the power of the forces that assailed him or her.
Thirdly, we also do not know what we would have done in the same circumstances.
We should keep this in mind the next time we see a brother or sister that has fallen or stumbled in their Christian walk.
II. Spiritual Restoration (Gal. 6:1b)
A. Always remember this that God is a God who loves us and has forgiven all our sins, past, present, and future.
B. Many are telling that Christ is a God of second chance. I don’t agree with that. For me, He is a God of multiple chances. I have failed Him many times and He “restored” me many times also.
C. Let us look first at the person who can be used by God to “restore” the sinning or the backsliding Christian.
1. They must be Spiritual, meaning:
a. Believers who walk by the Spirit (Gal. 5:16),
b. Those who are mature in the faith (1 Cor. 2:15; Heb. 5:13-14)
D. The word “restore” comes from the Greek “katartizo.” It is a powerful and picturesque word. It carries the idea of “repairing, mending and returning to a former state.” It was a word that was commonly used for setting broken bones. The word implies care and healing. A broken bone does not heal instantly. The setting of a broken bone requires much wisdom and work. Restoring a fellow believer will
involve hard work, care and time.
E. “In the spirit of meekness” (Gal. 6:1). To be meek is to be “mild and gentle.” Jesus was meek, but He stood for truth while at the same time reaching out to the hurting. We must be meek, but at the same time we cannot compromise the truth in order to appeal to the backslider or to somebody who is erring.
F. This delicate work must be done gently (prautetos; Gal. 5:22) and with the consciousness that no one is immune from falling into sin (1 Cor. 10:12).
G. Always remember that the purpose of restoration is to service not to punish the sinning brother. The fallen can be used of God once restoration has taken place.
H. considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. (Gal. 6:1). In other words, considering one’s own potential for temptation:
1. Aware that we all stumble in many things – Jas. 3:2
2. Remembering that we too can easily fall – 1 Cor. 10:12
III. About Burdens (Gal. 6:2-5)
A. Bear ye one another’s burdens
1. The word “burdens” here means “heaviness, weight, or troubles”, extra heavy loads which here represents difficulties, or problems, and we all have them.
2. The meaning is, have sympathy; feel for each other; and consider the case of a distressed brother as your own.
B. And so fulfil the law of Christ
1. The Law of Love which fulfil the whole commandment. We should be helpful to the difficulties of others.
2. Our brother’s infirmity may be his burden; and if we do not choose to help him to bear it, let us not reproach him because he is obliged to carry the load
3. The Christian brother and sister can fulfil the law of Christ by helping carry one another’s burdens.
C. For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. (Gal. 6:3)
1. Many approach the backslider with the attitude of, “I will never fall into sin.” The Scriptures say, Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. (1 Cor. 10:12) This is why Paul commanded us not to think more highly ourselves than we ought (Rom. 12:3).
D. But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For every man shall bear his own burden. (Gal. 6:4) Paul is still dealing with man in verse 3 who thinks himself to be something. The idea is, if you think you are something—prove it! The word prove means “to examine, put to the test.” It carries the idea of “discerning, examining, and testing for the purpose of approving.” It was a blacksmith’s term for testing so as to approve a piece of metal for its strength. In like manner, Paul calls upon us to examine and test ourselves to be sure that we are what we say we are.
E. For every man shall bear his own burden
1. The thing about us humans is that we all have burdens and that fact will never change, let’s help each other carry them.
Illustration 3: Explaining “My Yoke is Easy”
I had finished my sermon on Christ’s invitation to the labored and heavy laden, and a good man came to me, saying: “Do you know why Christ’s yoke is light, sir?” “Well,” I said, “because the good Lord helps us to carry it, I suppose.”
“No,” said he, shaking his head, “I think I know better than that. You see, when I was a boy at home I used to drive the oxen, and the yoke was never made to balance—as you said. Father’s yokes were always made heavier on one side than the other. Then we would put a weak bullock alongside a strong bullock; and the light end would come on the weak ox, the heavier end on the stronger one.
“That’s why the Lord’s yoke is easy and His burden light, because His yoke is made after the same pattern, and the heavy end is upon His shoulder.” (Matthew 11:29-30) Encyclopedia of 15,000 Illustrations: Signs of the Times.
We have a duty and responsibility to help others carry their burdens. Though we have our own difficulties too, it does not tell us that we should deny or stop helping our fellowmen. In our own small way, whether by material, physical help, or by encouragement, we can still be used by Christ to help the weak.