Read Galatians Chapter 6
Gal 6:14 May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.
This is such an innocent looking verse, tucked away in the middle of an eight-verse dissertation about circumcision. The first part of the verse seems to relate very well to the issue, but the latter part of the verse appears to have been tacked on as an afterthought. Many of the Jews of Paul’s time were relying on their circumcision as their ticket to eternal security. Paul said that boast was going to mean nothing in the end.
Our focus today will be upon the latter part of this verse. Paul made a powerful point. There is a huge separation between the people of God and the world. There are many differences between us and the world. There is a great chasm between the spiritual world and the physical world. More correctly stated, since Satan is the god of this world, there is a huge difference between God’s spiritual world and Satan’s spiritual world. Yes, he has one too. The spirits who obey Satan are all around us, attempting to prevent anyone from believing, and attempting to derail the effectiveness of Christians.
Paul wrote that the world has been crucified to him, and he has been crucified to the world. The act of separation from this world is extremely important. When we begin to follow Christ, we begin the process of separating ourselves from the world. A huge book could perhaps be written about what that entails. We could not even begin to cover it in this short discussion.
Sexuality is a creation of God. In its purest form, you and I know that He created it as a holy, pure physical union between a husband and a wife. Satan attempts to commandeer this holy action and take it places it was never meant to go. Satan’s world has made a mockery of God’s creation. There is a proliferation of perversion, adultery, sex before marriage, babies born out of wedlock, and of course, homosexuality. All of those things are a part of this world, not a part of God’s kingdom. We have been crucified to Satan’s twisted version of sexuality.
Now let’s think personally. You and I have encountered great difficulty in crucifying ourselves to this corner of the world. Because of circumstances, most of them beyond our control, we have found ourselves in a life and death battle against our worldly desires. It has not been easy crucifying that part of our fleshly desires. Let’s not think that Paul didn’t suffer some battles equally as difficult as those we face. Romans chapter 7 describe very well how hard it was for him to deal effectively with his flesh.
Despite the fact that Paul has a tremendous battle with sin, in this verse he confidently declared that the world had been crucified to him and he to the world. The separation of himself and the world has already happened. All that ensued in his life was to see the end result of what had already occurred.
Just because we are still in the midst of battle doesn’t mean that the world hasn’t been crucified to us. Paul was confident that his separation from the world had already happened. That’s true for us as well. We won’t necessarily understand how we can be separated and at the same time fully engaged in dealing with it, but truth is truth even when we don’t understand the extent of what is happening. Perhaps one way to look at it can be found from this verse.
1Pe 2:11 Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day He visits us.
We are aliens and strangers in this world. We are not comfortable here. We face opposition to our Christianity because we do not belong to the world. It has been crucified to us and it has been crucified to us. Take that fact to the bank.
Prayer: Lord, we are wrestling with this world and it stresses us out. We need Your strength and comfort as we live out our lives on this planet. Help us to see the truth from this verse, and to rest in its reality. Thank You for completing what we were unable to accomplish.