Posted April 13, 2016
And let us not grow weary of doing good,for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.So then, as we have opportunity,let us do good to everyone,and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
It’s easy to start well, but it’s another thing to finish well. Our generation is one rich in beautiful initial commitments, but poor in follow-through. Here Paul exhorts the church in Galatia to not grow tired of doing good to others, particularly in their generosity (see the prior verses for more on this), and grounds their generosity in eternity. He then recommissions them in acts of goodness and gives what should be the scope of their focus. Let’s look briefly at both of these:
The Call + Foundation
Paul starts off by calling us to not grow weary in doing good. We all know we should do good, but what about when we are tired of doing good? Why press on in doing good if it seems there’s not a good “return of investment”? Because, he promises, in due season we will reap. Paul paints the picture of a sower. Imagine a sower scattering his seed, but growing quickly discouraged because the seeds weren’t immediately sprouting once they hit the ground. Paul reminds the Galatians that while in the short-term we may not see the rapid growth we would hope for, we must put on our long-term glasses that look to the eternal realities vs. the temporal ones. Martin Lloyd Jones comments, ”We need to look ahead, to anticipate, to look forward to the eternal glories gleaming afar. The Christian life is a tasting of the first-fruits of that great harvest which is to come. . . . Go on with your task whatever your feelings; keep on with your work. God will give the increase, He will send the rain of His gracious mercies as we need it. There will be an abundant harvest. Look forward to it. ‘Ye shall reap.’”
The Universal + Local Scope
To whom should we do good? To all (universal), but particularly those of the household of faith (local). This verse reminds us that there is both a universal impetus to our acts of kindness and generosity, but also that there is a local expression of it that should be present as well. The local church is to be a place that we, in particular, should seek to invest in and contribute toward. Paul calls the church of Christ our “household of faith.” The church is to be far more than a meeting we attend, but a family we participate in and care for. Anyone who’s part of a family knows that with it come obligations, and here we see that one of those is to do good to those who are immediately around us.
May God fill us with with both a current desire to good to all, but also grant us the perseverance to continue in our acts of goodness and generosity with steadfastness!
Song by Brianna Gaither and Susan Rosser.
Production + mix by Dustin Ragland.
Artwork by Emily Guin.
Devotional by Joel Limpic.