Galatians 6:1-5

“Man is born to trouble, as the sparks fly upward” (Job 5:7). But thank God, we do not have to bear our burdens alone! There are three kinds of burdens:

1. Burdens You Should Willingly Pick Up

These are the burdens of a brother or sister in Christ.

“Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted” (Galatians 6:1). This is not talking about the unsaved, but about a person who knows Christ but is out of fellowship.

The Bible is a picture of people who have gotten back to God. Jonah ran from the Lord, yet came back and was used to bring an entire city to repentance. (Read Jonah 1-4.)

Peter cursed and denied Jesus. (Read Mark 14:66-72.) But God made him a rock again, and he became the flaming Apostle of Pentecost. (Read Acts 2.)

David—the man after God’s own heart—committed a horrible sin. But he prayed, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,” (Read Psalm 51.) and God did.

“If one member suffers, all the members suffer with it” (1 Corinthians 12:26a). They are in the body of Christ. Do you condemn them? You are condemning yourself. Restore literally means “putting back in place that which is broken or torn.” You do this gently, humbly, and sympathetically. (See Galatians 6:1-2.)

We have two motives for restoring:

To fulfill the law of Christ. (See Galatians 6:2.) “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’” (Galatians 5:14). Only a spiritual person can do that. (See Romans 5:5.)

To restore fellowship. A broken brother or sister is a hole in the net. The greatest testimony for Jesus—and the greatest testimony against Jesus—is the life of a Christian.


2. Burdens You Should Faithfully Stay Under

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. …But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load” (Galatians 6:2a,4-5).

In the original language, the first word here for burden (v.2) means a heavy load—like being out of fellowship with God.

But the second time (v.5), it is a different word altogether. It embodies the idea of a soldier’s knapsack—something necessary that makes you useful and may even save your life.

God wants us to live disciplined lives, so God lays burdens upon us and expects us to bear them. Nobody can repent for you. Nobody can trust Christ for you. Nobody can love God for you.

3. Burdens You Can Gladly Lay Down

“Cast your burden on the LORD, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22).

Burdens come to the high as well as to the low, to saints as well as to sinners, to the old as well as to the young. Do you have a broken heart? Has your spouse forsaken you? Is a physical malady gnawing away at your body? Is a problem perplexing you? Cast them upon the Lord.

Maybe God has given you that burden to bring you to Him.

Ask God to lay on your heart a brother or sister who is broken and needs to be mended. If you have a special burden, roll it on the Lord. He may not lift it, He may not solve the problem, but “He shall sustain you” (see Psalm 55:22).

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