The Test (Galatians 6:1-18)

“But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor.”  Galatians 6:4

For some people the word “test” stirs up feelings of fear and for some people the word “test” stirs up feelings of pride because they are confident about the outcome.  Question, “What feelings are stirred up in you when you hear the word “test?”

Certainly your response will depend on your experience with the word test.  For me, I think about all the years of being in school, ranging from the spelling test in first grade to the final test for my Master’s degree.  For others, it could be the test at the doctor’s office, or the test to get into an exclusive club.  The fact is, there are many different types of test in life.

Consider for a moment, Our More For Christ readings. The Apostle Paul is writing about a particular test in Galatians 6.  We would refer to this test as the test of self-examination.  The chapter begins with a command, “if anyone is caught in a transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness.”

Wow, what a test!  Paul commands us to do two things in the first 10 verses of this chapter:

1.  Responsibly engage others who are followers of Christ, Vs: 1-2

This is a great test.  We are to dedicate ourselves to others restoration.  But to accomplish this we must be responsible people.  This is a great test. We have to be Spiritual and Gentle in our character.  This is the test of walking in the Spirit and not in the flesh.

2.  Responsibly evaluate our own lives as followers of Christ, Vs: 3-10

This is a great test.  As we evaluate ourselves we are looking for several things:  1) We evaluate how we are living.  2) We evaluate how we are sharing.  3)  We evaluate how we are sowing.  If these things pass the test, we are challenged to keep on doing them because they will pay great dividends in our lives.

Question:  “Have you passed this test?”  The answer lies in how you treat others.  The fact is, if we daily test ourselves in these two areas we will develop a life that centers on the mercy of God that is best exhibited at the cross (6:11-18).  When this test in place you will be seen as one who according to Paul, “Bears in our body the marks of Jesus.”

Oh, how I pray that you and I look like people who have passed the test!!!

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