Christian Devotions
By Ross Freeman

Bear Each Other's Burdens
By Ross Freeman

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2 NKJ)

What are these burdens this scripture is speaking about? They are not physical or normal day to day cares, but moral burdens, sins, sorrows, errors and temptations.

If Christianity is unselfish, then Jesus expects us to take a deep interest in each other, restoring and aiding those in need and in trouble. Their burdens are to be our concerns and our aim is to help others to overcome these overpowering loads, and restore these people to emotional and spiritual stability.

The Pharisees and Sadducees would not touch people with these kinds of burdens, but ostracize them, condemned them and cast them out of the synagogue. Sadly, this attitude has been followed by a number of church leaders today.

Yet our God knows the burdens of life are heavy enough without adding to them in this heartless manner. God is a God of compassion and He requires the same from us. Helping others with love and kindness is a serious spiritual calling, not humanitarian sentiment. We are to be sympathetic towards these people with real sympathy, not mocking pity. Treat them with dignity and love just as Jesus did toward the woman caught in adultery, share their burdens, help ease their load, and their feeling of loneliness and isolation. This is a command of Jesus - do not become disobedient by neglecting this duty; but fulfill it and satisfy Him.

“Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves.” (Romans 15:1 NASB)

I also like the way this verse is phrased in the Phillips Modern English Version below:

“We who have strong faith ought to shoulder the burdens of the doubts and qualms of the weak and not just go our own sweet way.”

The question this verse is asking is; are we strong Christians, do our personal convictions allow us more freedom to bear, not just tolerate or put up with, but uphold lovingly the weaker brother or sister?

Jesus is our example of conduct in relationships between weak and strong Christians. His example requires mutual forbearing and love, which strengthens and builds up the weaker Christian, resulting in glorious praise to God. (v. 6)

“If, however, your are fulfilling the Royal Law, according to the scripture, YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOUR AS YOURSELF. You are doing well.” (James 2:8 NASB)

The royal law is called royal because it is the supreme law; it is the source of all other laws governing human relationships. It is the ultimate law.

It’s interesting to note that the word love in the Hebrew (“Ahav”) is translated as “esteem.” So to love your neighbor is also to build up their self-esteem. If we truly understand and completely follow the command to love one another, we would fulfill every social duty and would especially comply with those commandments that are fundamental in human relations found in the following scripture:

“For the commandments. You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness, you shall not covet, and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely you shall love your neighbour as yourself.” (Romans 13:9 NKJ)

Only the love for God can empower us to love others and ourselves totally.

"You will discover that you have two hands. One is for helping yourself and the other is for helping others.” Audrey Hepburn

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