Beyond the Weekend

July 1 | Conflict

July 1, 2015

Text: Galatians 5.13-16

The Christians in Galatia were in a deep conflict over how a person was converted to a follower of Christ. Some Jewish Christians were teaching that new Gentile believers needed to adhere to the ancient Jewish laws of Moses, especially circumcision. But the Apostle Paul brought a new message: we are all sinners, all sinners deserve Hell (separation from God), Jesus died for our sins, and we can be forgiven and united with God if we put our faith in Jesus. This is the great message of salvation for all of us!

But the Galatians also struggled with how they handled the conflict. Paul addresses the manner of their dispute by warning, “If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other” (Galatians 5.15). The dispute became so heated they were in danger of destroying their unity in Christ.

As Christians, disagreements are inevitable! But conflicts shouldn’t dismiss our unity in Christ or drive us to treat one another with contempt. Instead, Paul teaches that if we live in accordance with the Spirit, we’ll love our neighbor as ourselves (see Galatians 5.14b).

Today, as you welcome God into your day, identify an area of tension in your life. Ask God to show you how to respond. Allow the Spirit to guide you through this conflict in a way that honors God and brings life to those with whom you’re struggling.

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