We invite you to take a peek inside our weekly Light for the Way devotional series provided for staff.
By Pastor Chris Wheatley, Senior Director of Pastoral Care Services
The major theme of Paul’s letter to the Galatians is whether, why and how Christians should follow the law. And to many of us who grew up in a historically Christian culture, the answer seems obvious. But to many new Christians, the first response to learning that Christ’s death and resurrection offer forgiveness for all our sins is the question, “So then can I sin as much as I want?”
Paul’s complete argument is too complicated for our time today, so let’s focus on today’s Scripture:
“God is not mocked. You will reap what you sow.” (Galatians 6:7)
Paul moves the conversation from punishment to consequence. If you plant corn in the spring, you shouldn’t be surprised to discover that you’ve grown corn in the fall. This isn’t God stepping in to reward or punish the planting of corn. It’s the natural consequence of doing so, and the basis of all agriculture.
And the same is true for many things in life. If you start jogging every day, you shouldn’t be surprised if your endurance improves. If you go out of your way to make people around you feel valued and happy, you shouldn’t be surprised if you have more friends. And if you engage in a life dedicated to selfishness and excess … well, would you really be surprised to find yourself feeling empty, meaningless, and unhappy?
In the same way, God’s law exists to point us away from things that will make our lives worse, and towards things that will ultimately bring us joy. Even disregarding the question of punishment, it teaches us what to sow so that we may reap a good life.
And what is God’s law? Jesus summed it up in two sentences: “Love the Lord … Love your neighbor ….”
This is the reason that Presbyterian Homes & Services looks to the Bible to guide the way we care for elders and treat each other. In all that we do, we seek to put love first, so that we may create a more loving future for everyone.
Rev. Chris Wheatley serves PHS as Senior Director of Pastoral Care Services. He is an ordained Lutheran pastor and has served in hospice, eldercare, hospital, HIV/AIDS and congregational settings. He and his wife Nicole are perpetually outnumbered by cats and Dobermans.
The Light for the Way series provides staff with an examination of a biblical reading to deepen our focus on scripture. Thank you for engaging with this series as we seek wisdom through prayer and reflection as a Christian Ministry.
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Introducing Light for the Way, a new devotional series
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