PASTOR DON'S CHRISTIAN ED NOTES
Let Us Not Lose Heart as We Serve the Lord
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Sunday, March 14, 2010 -

Galatians 6:6-10 - “One who is taught the word must share all good things with the one who teaches. [7] Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. [8] For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. [9] And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. [10] So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”

There are two factors producing loss of heart for those who walk in discipleship with Jesus Christ:

a) There is the constant battle with a world which seeks to make things compatible with the kingdom of God that can never be made compatible with it. All sinners seek to normalize their sin. This is why Paul paints lists of sins and makes it very clear that these can never be made compatible with God’s kingdom:

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 - “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, [10] nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

Galatians 5:19-21 - “Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, [20] idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, [21] envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

b) There is the time lapse that always comes between sowing and reaping. This whole passage is framed in agricultural imagery - Galatians 6:7-8 - “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. [8] For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.”

We are warned not to be “deceived” by this time delay. All actions grow far beyond their initial commitment. If we forget this fact deception can form itself in two different ways:

i) You can come to think because your life doesn’t fall apart every time you indulge in sins God forbids, you can sin with immunity and are unharmed by small compromises.

ii) On the positive side, you can vastly underrate the power there is in small, unnoticed deeds of righteousness repeated, even when you don’t feel the power of that obedience yet.

What are the steps to take if you would not lose heart in doing good for Jesus?

1) Especially when you feel no natural inclination or interest, keep yourself immersed in the corporate study of God’s Word - Galatians 6:6 - “One who is taught the word must share all good things with the one who teaches.”

We all know of the importance of maintaining our devotional life in private, but that’s not Paul’s subject here. Nor are we to see this verse as describing nothing other than churches paying their pastors. If we would not lose heart in tough days we must commit deeply to coming together with the church to study the Scriptures. We must gather together to hear the Word taught.

2) When you don’t see your dreams coming true, shun what you know is sinful and keep doing the little things you know God would have you do - Galatians 6:7-8 - “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. [8] For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.”

These are very potent words. Both eternal life and destruction are bound up with the repetition of small acts sown. When you don’t get solutions concentrate on character.

3) When your dreams aren’t coming true, look for opportunities to do good to others, especially other Christians - Galatians 6:9-10 - “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. [10] So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”

The surest way to lose heart in faith is to focus on yourself. Renewed passion is found in the outward spill of life - John 7:37-39 - “On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. [38] Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, 'Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.' " [39] Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

Notice that in Jesus’ words the momentum of the Spirit is from the inward life outward - not from the outward life inward.