Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity (1887

Galatians 5:25-6:10 In many ways, the praises of the first orthodox congregations are still meant for orthodox Christian congregations.1 But even in grievances that the holy apostles more often touch on and lay bare in their epistles, we have a reflection of the grievances as they more or less come to light in Christian congregations of all times.2 Therefore, the warnings and admonitions of apostle are still valid today to congregations depending on their faults and infirmities. Thus the admonition to be borne before all other words of our text: Bear one another's burdens. Oh, how necessary this is, how much is dependent on their heeding for the welfare of a congregation! Therefore, let us now heed The acclamation of the Apostle to a Christian congregation: Bear one another's burdens! 1. the high necessity; it is already evident a. from the fact that the Church lives in the flesh here on earth; α. here the Church, the heavenly kingdom, is like unto a net full of good and rotten fish3, the five foolish and five wise virgins4; it is also the weeds among the wheat, that is the small group of true believers who bear the Holy Spirit in the heart and alone are the Church, even hypocrites, pretend Christians and mouth-Christians are mixed; β. but also among members of the Church, true Christians, there is sin, weakness and infirmity, they are not perfect, but still carry all their old Adam in themselves; b. particularly from the sad experience that we so often make in the community, for, as among the Galatians, it is also found in the churches today: α. vain ambition, arrogance and dogmatism5; ‫א‬. because of earthly fortune, wealth, honor, and reputation before men one is often arrogant over poorer and weak in knowledge Christians, one always holds on to his advice as the best, to which all others should follow, etc.; ‫ב‬. one is therefore often rigid in his opinion and will not yield, even if one sees that one is wrong; β. hatred, discord, strife, and irreconcilability6; ‫א‬. God also preserves a congregation from manifest divisions and from mobs7; ‫ב‬. yet hate, discord, strife, and irreconcilability often prevails among members; and these sins eat like a cancer in the body of the congregation that they cannot flourish and grow; γ. Reluctance and unwillingness in administration of earthly goods8; ‫א‬. for the preservation of their own community, church and school; ‫ב‬. for the extension of the kingdom of God, various missions and other charitable purposes; how often zeal grows cold among many in our
1 2

Romans 1:8; 1 Corinthians 1:4-7; 1 Thessalonians 1:3-4. 1 Corinthians 1:11-13, 11:18ff.; Galatians 5:15; Philippians 2:3, etc. 3 Matthew 13. 4 Matthew 25. 5 Galatians 5:26, 6:3. 6 Galatians 5:26. 7 1 Corinthians 11:18-19. 8 Galatians 6:6, 9-10.

congregations, giving is a burden to him, he asks in collections: "Another one?" and behold, it often quite poorly fails. Oh, how necessary therefore is the acclamation of the Apostle: Bear one another's burdens! 2. the proper observance of this acclamation; it consists in that we a. guard ourselves with all diligence against egotism and bear with patience the infirmities of our fellow Christians9, α. that we do not raise ourselves over others because of our spiritual or physical gifts, happily yield to others, take a back seat to our own opinion10, β. particularly infirmities of the weak11 and to bear the burden that the brother gives us to carry; we do not like some things about him, he does many things that offend and insult us, so we must remember that we also thus do to him in order that he has to bear our burden.12 b. rightly help the erring and the fallen with a spirit of meekness and pursue peace with all men; α. perhaps exercise punishment and admonition on the sinning brother according to Matthew 18, but gently, brotherly, kindly, mindful of our own weakness 13; β. but once a fire has broken out, we help extinguish it with prayer, reconciliation, and "turn a blind eye"14; c. that we willingly and tirelessly open up our hands for the maintenance of servants of the church and teachers, as well as for supporting our fellow believers and others in their spiritual and physical need; God cannot be mocked; it is a common burden; the more diligently we sow, the greater the harvest will be in its time.15 A.G.G.


Galatians 5:26, 6:3-5. Philippians 2:3; Romans 12:16-17. 11 Romans 15:1. 12 Galatians 6;2; Colossians 3:14; 1 Peter 4:8. 13 Galatians 6:1; Psalm 141:5. 14 "durch die Finger sehen". Luther's Table Talk, St. Louis Edition 22:820-821; Also Commentary on John 15:9, St. Louis Edition 8:390-393. Ap. AC IV:126-129 (Müller Edition). 15 Galatians 6:6-10.

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