Practical Spirituality for Christians Gal. 6:1-9 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
In Gal. 6, Paul explains practical spirituality for Christians. Paul already explained the problem with going back under the law after you’re saved. His conclusion at the end of chapter 5, to remedy these problems, was for the Galatians to walk in the Spirit. However, it is difficult for a young Christian to know exactly how to “walk in the Spirit.” So, Paul gave the Galatians some examples of practical spirituality for Spirit-filled Christians. These are things that we should be developing in our own lives, as well.
Notice back in Gal 5:14-15, Paul reminded the Galatians that they were to love each other and warned of the ill effects of biting and devouring one another instead. The temptation of the flesh when constrained by the law is to do the exact opposite of what Paul told the Galatians to do. So, to keep a loving, unified spirit among themselves, Paul described for them practical spirituality. These are things that keep a church running smoothly:
Restoration – Gal 6:1 – in practical spirituality, the first thing has to do with how we handle those who have messed up. This is not just a person who has a fault, because we all have faults. This is a person who has been overtaken in a fault. We are not to hold him back or keep him out. We are to restore him. Satan and the Lord both know whether you have restored someone that ought to be restored. If you haven’t, you set yourself to be overtaken in a fault to see how it feels to get the thing right with God and still be under the accusing eye of man [compare 2 Cor 2:10-11]. A fellow like that can feel so excluded that he ends up out of fellowship with God and totally worthless as a Christian. Some of the Galatians had messed up in following this man who had put them back under the law and they were going to have to be restored after getting straightened out on their doctrine.
Service – Gal 6:2-3 – the next thing has to do with helping each other out. We are to bear one another’s burdens; this fulfills the law, so it must be connected to charity [Gal 5:14; Rom 13:10]. “What we do, we do together; and many hands make light work.” In a church there are many things that must be done and we work together as a body to get these things done. God designed it that way.  Now when a man thinks he’s too good to bear another’s burdens he is totally deceived. He is filled with pride and he is just like a Pharisee [Matt 23:4]. He has forgotten that we are to serve [Matt 20:26-28]. He’s worthless to the church. Rather, he ought to be on the lookout for ways to help and be ready to jump in anytime.
Faithfulness – Gal 6:4-5 – the next thing has to do with each person pulling his own weight. This is not a matter of helping others out as much as it is doing the part that you are supposed to do; the part God has given you to do. No one else is supposed to do your part. You are supposed to do it. And you are supposed to do it well. You are to “prove” your own work like a man would prove his armor before fighting in a battle, so that he is completely adept at handling it in any given situation [1 Sam 17:39]. Then you will rejoice in the work that you do. People are always happier with themselves when they excel at what they do. Consider the example of a football team – functions as a unit – cannot function if one man is missing or under achieving – can’t function if all try to be the quarterback – the quarterback would look horrible if the center weren’t blocking well.
Communication – Gal 6:6 – in the Bible this communication is giving [Phil 4:15]. A teacher spends a great deal of time getting the material together to preach and to teach and the folks who benefit from his preaching and teaching should give to him to compensate him for his labors on their behalf. He is to live of the gospel [1 Cor 9:13-14].
Spirituality – Gal 6:7-8 – now this particular passage is normally referred to as the doctrine of sowing and reaping and deals with the personal consequences of sowing carnal things and spiritual things. In the context of this lesson on practical spirituality, though, we could make a different application. When men sow to the flesh in the church they are going to reap corruption – modern scholarship yields corrupt Bibles [2 Cor 2:17] – modern music yields corrupt praise [contrast spiritual songs, hymns and psalms] – sowing to the Spirit reaps life everlasting – preaching the Bible yields souls saved – inviting the lost to church yields souls saved – sowing spiritual music causes the word of God to dwell in your hearts richly.
Steadfastness – Gal 6:9 – if a church will stay with these things and with the work that God has given them to do, they will reap a harvest one day – in due season – God knows when that is as long as they do not faint [1 Cor 15:58] – the flesh could never stay with this long enough to reap anything but trouble – the Spirit gives us hope to wait until God is ready for the harvest.
Goodness – Gal 6:10 – do good to all men – especially the household of faith – so we are not only to do good for each other but we are to do good toward others as well, any time we have the opportunity – this gives the church a good report without and also leads men to Christ – the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance – through us they will see that God is, in fact, good.
Conclusion: As we yield to the Spirit of God in our personal lives and as we yield to the leadership of the Holy Spirit in our church, these are examples of the practical spirituality to which we must be dedicated and in which we must be unwavering.