SUMMARY.--Restoring the Stumbling.
Reaping and Sowing.
Glorying in the Cross.
The Mark of Jesus Christ.
1, 2. If a man be overtaken in a fault. Not gone into sin as a
result of sinful premeditation, but surprised by it. Those intending
well are sometimes caught unawares.
Ye which are spiritual. Who have continued to walk in the Spirit.
Restore such an one. Instead of judging severely and seeking to
cut them off, seek lovingly to lead them back from their error.
Considering thyself. We ourselves may be caught by temptation
and sin. Let us bear in mind that we are not infallible, and judge
2. Bear ye one another's burdens. Help each other, sustain each
other; if you see one about to stumble under his burden, hold him up.
So fulfill the law of Christ. The law of love. See
3-6. If a man think, etc. If he thinks he is strong, needs no
help, will never need sympathy, etc., he deceiveth himself.
4. But let every man prove his own work. Instead of commenting
upon the weaknesses of others, let him test his own work. If his work
stands the test, there he can rejoice in it alone, not because he is
superior to another.
5. For every man shall bear his own burden. This seems at first to
The meaning of
is "Bear ye one another's burden of 
trial and suffering;" of
"Every one must bear his own burden of responsibility." The first is
aiding to bear the burden of another's infirmities; the second is the
burden of our account before God. The Greek had two different words for
"burden" in the two verses.
It is unfortunate that the Versions do not represent the difference by
two words in the English.
6. Let him that is taught. Let those who are taught by the preachers
and teachers sustain those who instruct them.
7-10. Be not deceived. Men often are. They do fancy that God may
be mocked. The immutable law of the spiritual kingdom shows that he is
Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. A law not only
of the vegetable world, but of our bodies and spirits. Habit is only an
illustration of this law. The delirium tremens on the one hand, and the
purity of the aged saint on the other are due to the action of this
8. Soweth to his flesh. He who thus sows will reap a crop of
fleshly lusts and ills. His carnal indulgence will end in moral ruin.
Soweth to the Spirit. He shall reap spiritually, and as a final
harvest the spiritual life beyond, the life everlasting.
9. Let us not be weary in well doing. In sowing to the Spirit.
Because, if we hold out faithful, and faint not, we are sure to reap in
10. As we have therefore opportunity. Doing good is well doing,
i. e., sowing to the Spirit. The Christian rule is to do
good, but above all others to love, cherish and help the brethren.
11-14. Ye see how large a letter. Rather as in the Revision.
Paul used an amanuensis in letter writing, but the superscriptions were
written in his own hand to show the genuineness of his epistles. See
Rom. 16:22, and Col. 4:18.
Some have supposed that his "thorn in the flesh"
was a weakness of the eyes which rendered it difficult for him to
12. As many as desire to make a fair shew in the flesh. To
comply with the worldly demands. They desire to have you circumcised,
because, if you are not, and they fellowship you, the Jews will
13. For neither they themselves. They do not keep the law in all
its details, but want to bring you under it that they may boast of
their Gentile proselytes.
Glory in your flesh. Glory because circumcision has made marks
in your flesh.
14. But God forbid. Not only will he not glory in what does away
with the 
but God forbid that he should glory in anything but the cross.
By whom. By this cross he also is crucified, so crucified that
he is dead to the world. It is separated from him.
15-18. In Christ Jesus. See note on
Circumcision in itself is a matter of indifference. To be a new
creature, neither Jew nor Gentile, but a child of God is essential.
16. This rule. The one just named in
A benediction is pronounced upon all such.
And upon the Israel of God. Rather, Even upon, etc. The
often means even, and does here, as the Israel of God does not differ
from those who follow "this rule."
17. From henceforth let no man trouble me. Dispute my apostolic
I bear in my body the marks, etc. He bore on his body too many
evidence of what he had suffered for Christ. As slaves were often
branded by their master's name, so he had the brand of Christ upon him
in his scars. Compare
2 Cor. 11:24, 25.
18. Brethren. This is his parting benediction. It rests not upon
the flesh against which he had warned them, but upon the highest part
of their being, the spirit.