14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
15 But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.
Ah, freedom! Everyone wants to be free! The question is: freedom to do what?
For youth, it can be freedom from the rules of their parents, or being able to earn money, or being able to drink legally. We all have different ideas of what freedom is, but many people think of freedom as not being under anyone’s control, or freedom from the law.
Well, Paul is telling the Galatians that freedom from the “Law” is not being able to do whatever you want, but the ability to choose love. The Christian is free from adherence to the Law of Moses because the command to love one another as stated in Leviticus and followed by Jesus command which we talked about the other day, sums up all the commandments. If we love, we don’t lie, don’t steal or kill or do any of the other things that we know in our hearts are wrong. Paul is also warning the Galatians not to attack one another.
There were disputes among the new Christians as to who was right when those who were Jewish converse wanted more of an adherence to Jewish laws than the Gentile Christians were doing, even though the apostles had agreed that they were not obligated to do so. This is still good advice for us today. Christianity is weakened when Christians fight over who is right.
There’s a story of 4 blind men encountering an elephant for the first time. One man is touching the leg and claims that an elephant is like a big rough log. Another at the tail says no, that it is thin and bushy and moves around a lot. The third at the trunk disagrees with both and says an elephant is like a long hose. The fourth is touching the tusks and claims that they are all wrong, and an elephant is hard like stone. All four are right and all four are wrong. The truth is only found by listening to them all and putting them together.
May we always be open to God’s truth or Christians may very well consume one another.
Lord, you are the source of all truth. We are limited by our human minds and often are so convinced of our own thoughts that we ignore the truth you want us to find. Help us, please, to be open to your truth wherever it can be found. Amen.