Boasting is not a good habit, most times. Proverbs 27.1 offers a common-sense reason for not boasting about the future: you just don’t know what will be. Solomon summarized this clearly in Proverbs 19.21. Jude 1.16 warns about boasting about one’s abilities or accomplishments. The Apostle Paul saw this as silly, too; 2 Corinthians 11.1-33. James (4.16-17) agrees! Solomon said such was a slippery slope in Proverbs 16.18. Seventeenth century English author and clergyman William Gurnall said: “Least doers are the greatest boasters.” Jesus told about such persons; Matthew 6.1-6.
But God said we should boast in the right things. He contrasts these in Jeremiah 9.23-24, especially in verse 24: boast about understanding God! This is just what Paul states in Galatians 6.14. This study explores his meaning of “the world has been crucified” through the cross of Jesus Christ. Then, we will connect this meaning with Galatians 6.2 NASB: “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.”
A. The world has been crucified by the cross of Jesus Christ.
- Let me explain this using a timeline. In your mind or on paper, draw a horizontal straight line about three inches long. Bisecting the line illustrates the descending of years to the left, called BC, from the ascending of years to the right, called AD. The ending point of one and beginning of the other is the event of Jesus’ birth.
- Jesus’ birth is the first of three pillars on which the Christian faith rests. His miraculous conception and birth by the virgin Mary was the proof of God’s prophesies through the Isaiah (7.14 and 9.6-7), the declaration of salvation by the angel of the Lord (Matthew 1.21), the confirming statement of John the Baptist (John 1.31-34), and the declarative proclamation of Apostle John (3.16).
- Now, at the AD end of the line to the right of this BC and AD intersection, draw two oblique lines at 45-degree angles from the end of the horizontal line, one upward to the right and the other downward to the right. The point where this fork in the horizontal line occurs represents the atoning death and bodily resurrection of Jesus over sin and death, respectively.
- These two events – Jesus’ death for sin and resurrection unto life – are the other two pillars on which the Christian faith rests. Jesus said He would die for our sins (Matthew 12.40, 16.21, 27.63). Apostle Peter (1.3.18) affirmed this. Paul adds understanding in Romans 4.25, 2 Corinthians 5.21, and Hebrews 2.14-15. Jesus said He would be resurrected, in Matthew 12.40 and Mark 9.31. Angels confirmed this, in Luke 24.7.
- Now, about the fork at the end of the AD line, Jesus explained it in John 12.31-32. We might term this the point of power for Christians! The line ascending to the upper right is verse 32. The line descending to the lower right is verse 31.
- This descending line is what Paul meant by “the world has been crucified to me” (Galatians 6.14). “The world” was and still is the system of philosophies controlled by the “god of this world”, as Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 4.3-4.
- The satanic world systems of utopian, existential, and traditional philosophies had become “veils” (and still are) over the eyes of those who would not accept God as Sovereign of this world and would not receive His salvation through Jesus Christ. Dr. Luke includes Paul’s sermon about this in Acts 17. 22-31. Paul, also, writes about this in Ephesians 6:12, 1 Corinthians 1.22-23, Romans 1. 18-32, 2 Timothy 3.1-7, and Galatians 5.19-21. John (1.4.3-4) summarizes and reminds us why we are victorious. You will need to accept John’s summary in Galatians 6.2.
- But, satan was judged and cast out at Jesus’ cross, as He states in John 12.31! This fulfilled God’s prophesy through Isaiah (14.12-15). Jesus had finally bound on earth what was bound in Heaven, as He infers in His Model Prayer (Matthew 6.10) and which authority He appropriated to His followers in Matthew 16.19 and Luke 10.19!
- Consider other proofs that Jesus judged and cast satan out, as He states in John 12.31. For example, John 16.11, Hebrews 2.14, Ephesians 3.9 (Jesus escorted satan to the Pit of Hades), Colossians 2.14-15, and Acts 17.31 (Jesus was appointed Judge by God long before Paul’s speech). The Angel of Revelation 20.1-3 chained satan when Judge Jesus pronounced judgment in John 12.31!
- Paul understood this and enjoyed the benefits, as he says, (2 Corinthians 12.9-10, commenting on Acts 13.44-14.22, as Paul reminds Timothy [2.3.10-11])!
- Thus, Paul writes in Galatians 6.14 that “the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world!” He had experienced what it means to be released from the control of the world in living as a Christian.
B. When the world had been crucified to Paul, he could help others.
- In Galatians 6.2, Paul implores believers to “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ” (NASB). Thus ‘bearing’ is determined by the ‘law of Christ’.
- What is the “law of Christ”? Jesus gives this in His answer to the Pharisaical lawyer in Matthew 22.37-40. Later, Jesus would give a “new commandment” to His disciples, which He states in John 13.34; love, “just as I have loved you”. This is His meaning of ‘teaching’ in Matthew 28.20, as is explained in Mark 16.17-[especially] 20. (How is this like Matthew 10.7-8?) John 17.12 helps to define the ‘love’ Jesus speaks about.
- Jesus’ application of “love one another” He explains in John 13.35. Acts 11.26 shows this happening. This is what Paul means by “bear one another’s burdens” in Galatians 6.2.
- Jesus had given the example throughout His ministry and called for helpers; Matthew 9.35-38. Peter restates as the identifier of Jesus in Acts 10.38. John (1.3.8b) acknowledges, also.
- Bearing one another’s burdens had identified Jesus to man (Exodus 34.10 and John 15.24) and was the lifestyle Paul knew Jesus meant for man, as Jesus states in the Lord’s Prayer in John 17.18. He left us to bear one another’s burdens! (Compare this with Ecclesiastes 4.12)
- This is consistent with what He had taught the Apostles in Matthew 10.7-8: preach the message of salvation and administer it to all who want to receive it! This is why Paul writes as he does about himself in 1 Corinthians 2.4-5. He knew what Jesus meant!
- After commissioning His Apostles, Jesus sent them out to “bear the burdens” of those who asked for help. Luke 10.1-19, especially verses 9, 17, and 19, tells their story. Paul had spoken with them (Galatians 1.18-19). Believers’ proclamation and proof in Antioch earned for them the title “Christian”; Acts 11.26. They were “little Christs” to the burdened who asked for relief; see James 5.14-15. The friends letting the paralytic down through the roof to get him in front of Jesus is a picture of what happens during such spiritual events; see Luke 5.19-26. (Note the paralytic’s faith to ‘receive’ healing. Healing must be received!)
- The healing of the paralytic at the Temple gate through Peter is an example of ‘bearing another’s burden’, even that of a stranger, but not one to the Holy Spirit. Read the story in Acts 3.1-10. Peter and John “gave” the man the name that brought about his abilities to walk and leap, which he had not done since birth! Peter proclaimed the source of healing in verse 16 and, to the Sanhedrin, in Acts 4.12.
The world and satan still have been crucified to believers. We have been freed from their deceptions and devices. We have been given the Name above all names for the working out of our salvation; that is, we must speak the name of “Jesus” in faith against the demons of this world to be freed personally and to help others wishing to be freed. Paul clarifies this in Philippians 2.9-13. The Name has been given to us, and we must focus its power against the evil that binds, while dressed in our armor (Ephesians 6.10-18)! Lay aside every hindrance (Hebrews 12.1-2) and bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6.2). “Jesus” IS the word of our testimony (Revelation 12.11)!
Praise God!!! Copyright © by Maurice L. Painter, 2016. www.sozoclass.com