Wednesday, May 9, 2018
When’s the Last Time You Got Emotional about the Gospel?
Gal. 3:1 You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly exhibited as crucified! 2 The only thing I want to learn from you is this: Did you receive the Spirit by doing the works of the law or by believing what you heard? 3 Are you so foolish? Having started with the Spirit, are you now ending with the flesh? 4 Did you experience so much for nothing?—if it really was for nothing. 5 Well then, does God supply you with the Spirit and work miracles among you by your doing the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard?
Throughout this letter we experience the passion of Paul. These were his spiritual children and someone has led them astray. Just as loving parents may become emotional when their children wander off and end up engaging in destructive behavior, so Paul cries out to the Galatians. His heart is broken because he knows what is at stake. The good news of the resurrected Lord had brought these children freedom, but now they were willing to throw all that away because of false teachers. He was grief stricken!
Voices today are encouraging us to believe that pretty much “anything goes.” Let people believe whatever they want and they will be happy! But the Gospel invitation is one to a transformed and eternal life with the Father. Do we really not care if people miss out on that opportunity?
Again, if we were thinking about our own family members, I would think that we would want them to be a part of what Jesus has to offer! Although, I have been around people who have told me that they have never even considered praying for the salvation of their own children. Really? Have we become so complacent that we no longer have any burden for those who don’t know Christ?
Paul is pretty riled up in this passage of Scripture because the faith of the Galatians is extremely important to him. Our love and concern for others ought to result is us becoming emotional about the gospel as well. At the root of Paul’s emotion was his own personal encounter with Jesus Christ. He had fallen deeply in love with the one who had set him free. He had experienced love, grace and transformation and he wanted others to have the same experience. If we are not emotional about the gospel, then I wonder where we are in our own walk with Christ.
When Jesus gets ahold of us and consumes our lives, then we have a burning passion for him, and for others to know him. Paul becomes an example for us. We are to be emotional about the gospel, having a deep desire for all to be saved! We should be defensive when others try to corrupt peoples’ thoughts, or show them a different gospel. Righteous indignation is sometimes a good thing and should be exercised at the right moment.
Lord, may my passion for you be reflected in my concern for others. Amen.