You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. The entire law is summed up in a single command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other. (Galatians 5:13-15)
The apostle Paul is providing us all with a stern warning against Christian cannibalism—biting and devouring one another—which means that we all must act the part of a cannibal from time to time.
So . . . when was the last time you played the role of a Christian cannibal? When was the last time you found yourself as the “main course” on someone else’s plate?
How easy it is for us to bite into the brokenness of another! How quick we are to devour the differences and difficulties in others! The problem of Christian cannibalism is just as prevalent in the church today as it was in the church of Galatia. We bite and devour each other in our marriages. We bite and devour in our friendships. We bite and devour in our associations. Sadly, it is a meal we indulge in far too often and enjoy far too much.
The only cure for Christian cannibalism is to feast on the Gospel. Without daily doses of the Gospel, we eventually find ourselves consuming and being consumed by each other. Only Gospel love liberates us from our natural tendency to feast on our family of faith. Only Gospel love transforms us from biting others to blessing them . . . from devouring others to delighting in them! Only Gospel love will replace a critical spirit with a compassionate soul.
When Christ’s love is the foundation upon which we build our lives, we begin living for the glory of God rather than our own personal gain. We no longer have to make every point. We no longer have to win every argument. We no longer have to try and “fix” everyone around us. We no longer have to lift ourselves up by putting others down. We can simply rest in our redemption, knowing that God is working all things together for the good of those who are His (Romans 8:28) and working to conform all those who are His to the likeness of Christ (Romans 8:29).
And along the way He wants us to feast on the truths of the Gospel—not on each other!
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!