There is so much important spiritual information in today’s text.
We see the dangers of being led astray by legalism and false teaching. We see Paul’s fears of losing the Galatian believers after all his labor of love. We see Paul’s heart of a pastor as he pleads with these believers to simply trust in Christ rather than trusting in their ability to earn God’s favor through obedience to The Law of Moses. We also see Paul’s heart as a spiritual father seeking to care for his children. The heart of a spiritual leader should never be as a stern dictator or like an easily influenced friend. But a true spiritual leader will be like a loving spiritual parent.
“But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children.” 1 Thessalonians 2:7, NKJV.
“as you know how we exhorted, and comforted, and charged every one of you, as a father does his own children,” 1 Thessalonians 2:11, NKJV.
True spiritual leadership follows the rule of love as we see in today’s text…
Dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to live as I do in freedom from these things, for I have become like you Gentiles—free from those laws. You did not mistreat me when I first preached to you. Surely you remember that I was sick when I first brought you the Good News. But even though my condition tempted you to reject me, you did not despise me or turn me away. No, you took me in and cared for me as though I were an angelfrom God or even Christ Jesus himself. Where is that joyful and grateful spirit you felt then? I am sure you would have taken out your own eyes and given them to me if it had been possible. Have I now become your enemy because I am telling you the truth? Those false teachers are so eager to win your favor, but their intentions are not good. They are trying to shut you off from me so that you will pay attention only to them. If someone is eager to do good things for you, that’s all right; but let them do it all the time, not just when I’m with you. Oh, my dear children! I feel as if I’m going through labor pains for you again, and they will continue until Christ is fully developed in your lives. I wish I were with you right now so I could change my tone. But at this distance I don’t know how else to help you.
Galatians 4:12-20 (NLT)