A Little Leaven

Galatians 5:9-15 A little leaven leavens the whole lump. I have confidence in you through the Lord, that you will be none otherwise minded: but he that troubles you shall bear his judgment, whosoever he be. And I, brethren, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution? then is the offence of the cross ceased. I would they were even cut off which trouble you. For, brethren, you have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shall love thy neighbour as thyself. But if you bite and devour one another, take heed that you be not consumed one of another. 

‘A little leaven leavens the whole lump’ – A little sin or false doctrine can corrupt the whole life and conduct (1Cor. 5:6; Jas. 2:10).

‘I have confidence in you through the Lord, that ye will be none otherwise minded; but he that troubles you shall bear his judgment, whosoever he be.’ I have faith that you will recover yourself and regain the grace you have lost and that your troubler will be cut off (5:10-12).

‘If I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution?’ It was reported that Paul preached circumcision (perhaps because Timothy was circumcised. Acts 16:3), but if so, why did the Jews still persecute him? If he did that, the offence of the cross would cease.

‘You have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.’ You have been called to total freedom from all the law, but do not let this cause you to think that you have no responsibility to live right. The new covenant also demands righteousness of all people and the love of neighbours as yourself (5:13-14; Matt. 19:19; Rom. 13:9).

‘But if you bite and devour one another, take heed that you be not consumed one of another.’ If you become “cannibalistic” Christians, you will destroy one another, confirming your total backslidings and fall from grace (1:6-8; 3:1-5; 5:4, 15).

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