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Especially to Family

Especially to Family

Words of Faith 7-17-19

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2019

Jeff.Hoy@faithfellowshipweb.com

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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Galatians 6

     [9] Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. [10] Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. 

 

      If there is anything to be learned in the life of ministry, it is this fundamental truth-- Don't grow weary in the sowing of the Word and Life into people. In the proper time, it will reap a harvest if we do not give up.  Paul included himself in this statement, "us" and "we," because he was preaching to himself as much as to anyone else. If anyone had reason to grow weary, surely it was Paul! Ministry is hard, but the harvest will come.

     Paul lifted before the Galatians an obligation to do good to all people as the God-moments arrived, but then he also emphasized a special responsibility to care for those who are believers. Paul had such a heart for the family of believers even if they had been difficult for him to deal with. Don't miss that. The family of believers is to receive special concern. 

       Most commentators agree that Paul was again talking about financial support. The application may be that if a person or church is limited in available resources, first priority should be made for those who are believers and for Christian ministries. In terms of ministries, there are many causes doing good in the world but not all are in the Name of Christ. A priority is also set for those who are in the family of believers and may not be cared for elsewhere because of their faith.

       When Paul talked about the "family of believers," he was not talking about just a local church or even a denomination. He was speaking of those who have become related to us by believing in Christ. They are family. Judaism set the highest priority on care for the family, especially parents, and this carried over into New Testament ethics. It makes no sense to have those in the church family left in need.

       It may seem narrow to prefer or prioritize Christian giving and concern for believers, but there is some sense of witness in the way that believers care for their own house and family.  Balance is important here. Paul is not advocating selfishness. Some churches are completely inwardly focused without any concern for easing pain in other places. There are also those who give heavily to missions far away and leave families very near to them in want.  Paul would not want us to miss either.

       This verse is also often applied to the doing of business. Should Christians give preference to a Christian in doing business? Many areas have a Christian Business Directory through which a believer can choose to do business with a fellow believer. This is an excellent tool, especially when times are difficult.  There is also great value in doing business with non-believers as the Lord leads. 

        It should go without saying that if one offers their business services in the Name of the Lord, the highest ethical standards should be in place as a witness and testimony.  Such businesses should also operate in the most generous of ways.  But a believer should not expect "free work" from a fellow believer.  A worker deserves his wages (1 Tim. 5:18).

        So what is our conclusion here?  Should I always go with the tradesman who has a fish symbol in their advertisement?  Should I always give through an agency that ministers in the Name of the Lord?  Should I give preferential care to believers going through a rough time rather than a general helping agency?  Certainly, these are the matters to pray over with the guidance of the Spirit carefully.  The Word guides us as we pray.  As we have the opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. 

 

      Father God, help me to carefully direct the resources that You have entrusted to me.  Help me to know where to give those dollars beyond my tithe.  Help me to know where to give those hours entrusted to me for caring.  Help me to discern the best place to offer a helping hand.  Show me the opportunities You have designed for me so that I will not miss them.  In Jesus' Name.

 

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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail, and our website, and our church app, excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.  

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