Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO GALATIANS 6\\

In this chapter the apostle exhorts to the exercise of various things,
which greatly become professors of religion, such as meekness towards
backsliders, love to the saints, modesty in themselves, and
beneficence to others; exposes the hypocrisy and ambition of the false
teachers, in order that the Galatians might beware of them, and not be
ensnared by them; and gives an account of his own disposition,
conduct, and sufferings, as a rule and example to them, and by which
they might judge of the difference between him and the false apostles;
and concludes the epistle with his apostolical salutation and
benediction. Having mentioned the fruits of the spirit in the
preceding chapter, he singles out some of them, and a little enlarges
upon them; and begins with meekness, as that should be used by
spiritual men to fallen believers, which he persuades to, not only
because they are brethren, and but men, and have been overtaken in sin
unawares; but because, though they themselves are spiritual, yet
should consider they are liable to be tempted, \\#Ga 6:1\\. And next
he advises to show their love to one another, by bearing each other's
burdens, which he enforces by this argument, it being a fulfilling the
law of Christ, \\#Ga 6:2\\. And whereas pride and haughtiness lie in
the way of such a deportment, he dissuades from a vain opinion of a
man's self, that being no other than self-deception, \\#Ga 6:3\\, and
observes, that a man will have the best view of himself and see what
occasion he has for glorying, when he considers himself simply and
nakedly, and not in comparison with others, \\#Ga 6:4\\, and there is
good reason why he should do so, seeing every man must give an account
of his own actions, be judged according to them, and receive his
reward or punishment, \\#Ga 6:5\\. Hence the apostle passes to
liberality and beneficence, and first to teachers of the word, to whom
such as are taught by them should communicate, and that in good
things, and in all good things, \\#Ga 6:6\\. The arguments used to
enforce this exhortation are, that to do otherwise is a deception of
themselves, and is a mocking of God; and besides, they shall be
treated according to their actions, the use or abuse of what God has
given them, signified by a proverbial expression, what a man sows,
that shall he reap, \\#Ga 6:7\\, which is enlarged upon and
illustrated, by observing, that he that spends his substance merely on
himself, and on carnal pleasures, and to indulge the flesh, the issue
of things to him will be ruin, temporal and eternal; but he that lays
out his substance on spiritual things, and for spiritual purposes, the
issue will be life everlasting, \\#Ga 6:8\\. Wherefore the apostle
renews the exhortation to be bountiful without weariness, seeing there
is a reaping time coming, \\#Ga 6:9\\, and then points out the persons
in general to whom good is to be done as opportunity offers, even all
men, but especially such as are believers in Christ, are of his
family, and particularly stewards there, as ministers of the Gospel
are, \\#Ga 6:10\\. And thus the apostle, having finished what he
chiefly intended in this epistle, observes to the Galatians the great
regard he had to them, shown in writing to them so long a letter, and
that with his own hand, \\#Ga 6:11\\. And as his chief view was to
detect the false apostles, he cannot conclude without taking some
further notice of them, which he does by exposing their hypocrisy and
ambition; they only made a show of religion outwardly, and obliged
others to do that, which they did not choose themselves, namely, to be
circumcised; and their ends in all this were, that they might be free
from persecution, and have matter of glorying in the proselytes they
made, \\#Ga 6:12,13\\, but the apostle was of a quite different temper
and disposition; so far was he from glorying in his own flesh, or
others, that his determination was to glory only in Christ, and in his
cross, and that for this reason, because the world thereby was
crucified to him, and he unto the world, \\#Ga 6:14\\, as also,
because circumcision, which the false teachers obliged to, and gloried
in, and likewise uncircumcision, were of no avail in religious,
spiritual, and eternal affairs, but a new creature, \\#Ga 6:15\\, and
this is what everyone ought to attend unto as the rule of his walk
and conduct, since upon such shall be mercy and peace, as upon the
Israel of God, \\#Ga 6:16\\. And whereas the false apostles boasted of
the flesh, and circumcision in it, the apostle opposes thereunto the
marks of his sufferings for Christ, which he bore in his body; and
therefore with great gravity and authority charges, that no man should
give him any further trouble about what had been the subject matter of
this epistle, \\#Ga 6:17\\, and closes it with his usual salutation,
expressing his affection for the Galatians, as his brethren, wishing
the best of blessings for them, the grace of Christ, and that this
might be in their hearts, and with their spirits, \\#Ga 6:18\\.