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Bearing Each Other’s Burdens - Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
September 2, 2023 12:00 am

Bearing Each Other’s Burdens - Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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September 2, 2023 12:00 am

When you're going through difficulties and you really feel burdened, do you feel the freedom to share your hardship with others?

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Welcome to this weekend's In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley. Has the world tempted you to become so preoccupied with your needs that you don't make time for others? Today, we are challenged to look up from our own interests and begin bearing each other's burdens.

When you're going through some difficulty or hardship in your life and you really feel burdened down and I mean, you just, you know, you can't even express what you feel. Do you feel the freedom to share that with someone else? Or do you feel that to share your burden, your heartache, your trouble, your pain with someone else is a sign of weakness that someone else would say, well, why don't you just talk to God about it? Don't you Christians believe that God lifts your burdens?

Why do you want to tell anybody else? And so, oftentimes we carry things that God never intends for us to carry. We bear burdens that God never intends for us to bear alone.

Sometime He wants us to come straight to Him and to deal with them, sometimes God knows that you and I do not really and truly know exactly how to deal with some things. That sometimes we need someone else to help us. And when that's true, if we don't go to someone else, we just bear it that much longer, suffer that much more, probably more painfully than necessary.

And so the issue is, what do you do with it? Well, this is the second message in the series on how to bear our burdens. And today we're talking about how to bear each other's burden. You say, well, wait a minute now, man, if you knew how many burdens I already have, you wouldn't be talking to me about bearing somebody else's because I've got all I can handle.

Well, probably all of us have felt that away at some point in our life, but you know what happens? When you and I learn to bear someone else's burden, we learn how to deal with them, how to help them. Then when something comes along that really gives us a very, very painful time in our life, it's amazing how we having told someone else how God's worked in our life or we begin to do that, how we get our mind off ourself, then all of a sudden we get our mind on the Lord and things happen, things change. So that's what I want to talk about in this message. And you'll recall that we've talked about the different kinds of burdens as the burden of the Lord that He places upon, for example, in the Old Testament, the Bible says that He would have the burden of the Lord upon one of the prophets and they would deliver that word to a nation, maybe Israel or someone else.

Then of course, there are those burdens in our day and time, which we would call those burdens that we just deal with in life. And then of course, there's the whole idea of a burden of sin in somebody's life that they don't feel free to share it for a lot of reasons, embarrassment, afraid somebody will tell, somebody will gossip about them. And so, in the body of Christ, that is the church, the family of God, we should be able to share that because think about how many times the apostle Paul used the phrase one another. He said, for example, we're to love one another. We are to uphold one another. On through the Scriptures, he talks about all the things we should do with one another.

And sometime we want to feel like we're sufficient within ourselves and we isolate ourselves from each other when the truth is sharing our burdens would be the right thing to do. So, I want you to turn, if you will, to Galatians chapter six. And I want us to look at this passage in the light primarily of what he's speaking of here and the right attitude and so forth of bearing the burden of someone else whose burden is sin. So, I want you to look at this sixth chapter and let's read these first five verses together.

Here's what Paul says. He says, Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of gentleness, each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted, bear one another's burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks he's something when he's nothing, he deceives himself.

But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. For each one will bear his own load. Now, when you first read that, you think, that sounds like a contradiction.

First of all, we have to bear each other's burden. Then it says to bear one's own load. And I'm going to explain the difference here because there's no contradiction here. And when he talks about having a spirit of humility and then having the right to boast. Well, all that sounds like a contradiction, but it's not.

When you understand the true meaning of the word, you're understanding the true meaning of the words, there's no contradiction at all. So, when we think in terms of bearing another person's burden, that is, getting under the load with them so that they don't feel like that they're alone bearing that. And it can be one of many things that people have to bear. All of us have had to bear certain burdens in our life. And it may be things we brought upon ourselves, or it may be something that we didn't bring upon ourselves, something that somebody else's fault, or it may be that God has placed the burden upon our heart. God knows how to place this heaviness, this weight upon our life. So, as you may ask the question, well, what is a burden? A burden is a heaviness, a weight that weights down our soul, our spirit, and oftentimes makes us weary, fragments our mind oftentimes.

And it's hard for us to think clearly in the focus. And especially if that burden is something, some aspect of life that's happened to us, as we would say, or it may be something that God's placed upon your heart. If He calls you to do a certain thing and you don't do it, then you're going to feel the weight and the weight's going to get heavier and heavier. What is the heaviest weight that a person can bear is the weight of guilt. The weight of guilt over something you've done in the past, something that's going on in your life right now, something you're living with. So, let's get down to the whole issue that Paul is speaking of here, and that is bearing the burden of another person when the burden in their life is some form of sin.

Now, that brings up lots of questions, but I believe if you look at this passage of Scripture, it's very clear that Paul has, he certainly has the answer to that. And I want us to be reminded, first of all, go back to Psalm thirty-eight for a moment and notice what the psalmist says about this whole idea of burdens and how it affects our life. And if you look at the thirty-eight Psalm and the fourth verse, listen to what he says. He says, For my iniquities, that is, my sins, David say, my sins are gone over my head. That is, they're so high and so heavy in my life, he says, they have gone over my head as a heavy burden, they weigh too much for me. He'd reached this stage in his life, whatever this burden was, that he couldn't handle it anymore, and now he's talking to the Lord about how that burden can be handled. All of us have been there. How many of us have said, God, I can't handle it anymore.

Can't take it any longer. And yet, if it's something He places on your life, He shows you that you can. If it's something you've done in your life, it gets heavier and heavier and heavier. Why does God let the burden become heavier and heavier and heavier in your life?

In order to drive us to Himself so that He can enable us to get release from that burden. Now, suppose that burden is a burden of sin, something you did, something you're doing, something back yonder, something that's still hanging on. Maybe you asked God to forgive you, but it's still there. You repented of it twenty times, it's still there.

You look back in your life and you're continually reminded of it. How does God want us to deal with that? How does He want believers to help other believers bear that weight in their life? So, let's look at this passage. And the first thing we want to do is we want to clarify some terms here when he says, Brethren, if anyone, and he's speaking primarily to Christians if you read the first part of Galatians here.

He wrote to the Galatian church and so he's talking about believers primarily. But, it could be true also of a person who's not a believer if they're willing to come to Christ. So, here's what he says, Brethren, if anyone is caught in any trespass.

You have to look at those two words. The word caught here could mean caught in the very act like the woman caught in adultery. Or it could also mean this, a woman, a person who is caught, or as some translations say, overcome. Now, which means if a person finds themself or a person is, shall we say, that person is caught, it could not only mean that somebody identified them, but it also means something trapped them. It could mean they're caught in this thing. If any person is caught in a trespass, and also the word trespass here, we know that means an act of disobedience, of sin of some part. We've stepped across the line of what's right. It can also mean this, that a person is in a sin that they did not deliberately, willfully choose to be in. It's like a person slipping up on ice.

They're walking on ice. They didn't mean to fall, but they did. It's like a person who flirts with some form of temptation, who thinks they know how to handle that and that they're strong enough and they can't. So this is what he's talking about. Here's what you're going to find. There is a, watch this carefully, there is a sense of gentleness all the way through this passage. Because what he's doing is preparing us and showing us how to help someone else who's trapped. And what I want to help you to see is this.

The person who is a believer is a messenger of redemption. God uses us that way. But there's certain things that have to be true in our life. So here we are now and here's somebody in your life or somebody you know, somebody you work with, somebody you live with.

And there's something going on in their life that you know should not be there. And so, God keeps burdening your heart to help this person. How do you go about it? How do we go about it is what Paul says here. If someone's caught in a trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in the spirit of gentleness, each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. So, what's the first step?

Well, the first step, I want you to jot these down. For the simple reason, God will make you a messenger of redemption. And what is the first step? You've got to be willing, listen, to get involved in this person's life. You say, I don't want to get involved in somebody who's living in sin. Well, Jesus got involved in your life. And all through the New Testament, He is involved in the lives of people living in sin.

And what's the Great Commission about? Bringing people to a saving relationship to Christ. You've got to get involved in that person's life.

So, the very first step and the most important one is this. Now, somebody says, well, I can't bear someone else's sin. That's not the issue. In First Peter, here's what he says, it is Jesus who bears their sin. To become involved in someone's life who's living in sin and wants out, or maybe they don't want out, but God's burdened your heart to help them. You're not bearing their sin, only Jesus can bear sin. What we are beginning to do when we become involved with them, we want to get in a position so we can help them know how to deal with their sin. And if you and I are believers, we know how to deal with that. And so, that is the first step.

The second one is this. We have to have the right purpose in mind. Now, this is very important. If someone that you're dealing with and, or you feel impressed that God's burdened your heart for them. And isn't this just like God? That here's one of His children who's all burdened down with sin in their life, things in their past, or maybe what they're up to.

They hate it, they're slaved by it, or they like it. And so, God burdens your heart. And so, naturally, He's going to bring you to an involvement with that person, and likewise, you're going to have to have the right purpose. So, what's the right purpose?

The right purpose is to restore that person, which means there's going to be a change. Now, I want you to look at a particular word here. Look, if you will, in this first verse. When he says, if anyone's caught in a trespass, you who are spiritual restore a one in the spirit of gentleness.

Now, the way we understand the true meaning of the words of the New Testament is how were they used in the day in which they were written? This word restore is a word used for someone whose arm was broken and they set it right. Whose leg was broken, they set it right. Or they were mending their nets, they mended the broken part. Or if someone had something in their body that needed to be taken out or cut out or whatever it might be.

So, restoration means to set right. So, God is using you as a vessel to help this person to be set right, that is, to be restored. And so, we can't justify the whole idea of rejecting someone, shut them out. Because you see, oftentimes those people, they don't, they don't, they don't say, well, I couldn't go to church. They wouldn't want me. If they knew what I knew about me, they wouldn't want me. You think about that kind of a burden.

Or people, for example, who've been through things in their life and other people know about it and they know other people know about it, and so they bear this. Listen, God doesn't have any kind of signs on your forehead that you did this, you did that, you've done this, you've done that, you're divorced, you dis, that and the other. You see, that's what the world puts on you.

That's not what God puts on you. And He wants us to help you understand that He will set you free. And those of us who believe us have that responsibility, that privilege of helping someone else get free. If you've, if you have been enslaved by something in your life and someone helped you get free, don't you, didn't you just rejoice in your heart and praise God, thank you, thank you, thank you, God?

I don't have to live that way anymore. Somebody more than likely helped you. So, there's got to be some involvement in that person's life. And likewise, there are not many folks who are going to a pure stranger and say, I need help.

Here's what I did. Here's what, here's this sin in my life. They go into someone who is willing to get personally involved in their life, someone who is willing to do what? To restore, that is, in order to help somebody to be restored, you have to accept them. And that's the right purpose, to accept that person.

And there's a third thing I want you to notice here, and that's this. And that is to have the right motive. What's the right motive? Well, in the thirteenth chapter of John, you'll find out what the right motive is because Jesus was very clear about it.

Here's what He said. He said, A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I've loved you, so that you also love one another. Now, did Jesus love people who were only righteous? No, He loved people in every aspect of life. And so, when you look at the people He loved, and look at the people who were caught in all kinds of things, what was the pattern? Here was the pattern. You remember the lady who came in and began to pour ointment on Jesus, and the rest of the people at the dinner that night said, Look what He's tolerating.

He didn't say anything unkind to her at all. And oftentimes, we come to passages like this and we think, Now, wait a minute. Jesus, surely He doesn't want us to get involved. But you know what? Look in, look in First Peter chapter four for a moment, and I want you to notice maybe a couple of verses here. First Peter chapter four and verse eight, and look at this passage, Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of what? Sins. Does that mean that your love for someone can make them, cause them to be forgiven?

No, it means simply this. That when you say that love covers a multitude of sins, love, listen, when you love somebody, for example, it's the unconditional love of God that brought us to Him. And it's when you and I love someone else, we don't see the ugliness in their life. We don't see the bad things in their life. We look beyond that and deeper than that. We look beyond that to be able to see the good things that are in our life. And you say, Well, there's nothing good in my life.

Yes, there is. There's something good there. And so, love covers a multitude of sins, and so therefore, our motive has to be right. And what is that motive?

That motive is to demonstrate to them, to love them, and to show that love to them, and to be able to look beyond. Think about it, all of us have our faults and our failures in life, and all of us have sinned, whatever it may be. Somebody looked beyond all that. Well, certainly Jesus did. He looked beyond their sinfulness. The woman caught in the very act of adultery, did Jesus say, Aha, caught in the very act?

No. He just said, Go and sin no more. And the story of the prodigal son is a beautiful example of God's response. That is, love covered a multitude of sins. The father wasn't on the porch waiting for his son to come and looking and thinking, You dirty rascal, you spent all your inheritance and besides that, I can smell you all the way.

None of that. What happened? He ran, threw his arms around him, hugged him good. And while the son's trying to confess and repent of his sin, his father's telling him, What's getting ready to happen? And calling for the servants to have a big party and give him a robe and all the rest.

Why? That's God's way of saying to us, He loves us in spite of that. Now listen, if God loved you and me in spite of all their failures and our faults and our sins, the truth is, how does He want us to accept other people? Accept them just like they are. And in order to be a burden bearer for someone else, you and I have to be willing to accept them as they are, not after they get straightened out.

Now, you know, you've told me what's going on in your life and when you get straightened out, then you're not going to be friends. Is that Jesus' way? No, it's not. It's the world's way oftentimes. Yet on the other hand, the world sometimes is more accepting, more forgiving than we are. Now, one of the reasons they are, of course, is because the more sinful the person is that they're talking to, the better they feel. And so, that's wrong. But the truth is this, love covers a multitude of sins. It helps me to be able to look right through what they're doing and where they are in life and see this heart and this life and the possibilities and the prospects and the potential of that person's life.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-02 03:35:22 / 2023-09-02 03:44:56 / 10

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