Galatians 4:12-14…12 I beg of you, brethren, become as I am, for I also have become as you are. You have done me no wrong;
Paul pleaded with his brothers and sisters in Jesus to be in unity with him and one another. Jesus said, “The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one.” A Disciples are members of the family of God and with His glory, we can be in unity in our class and church. I believe Paul is telling the Galatians that when we follow his example we will be in unity. Because of their disunity with the gospel message he did not feel wronged.
In vv.13-14 Paul refers to a time when he was preaching the gospel to them when he had a bodily weakness of some kind. He praised them for the reception he received even though the condition may have made it necessary for them to provide special care for him as a messenger from God as “Christ Jesus Himself”. The early church took to heart the commands of Jesus to care for those needing special care.
Stark said “during the time of fast growth of the church in the first 3-1/2 centuries there was no antibiotics, effective medicines, or even awareness of how the diseases spread. In the cities for other than the ruling class, there was no sanitation, etc. The average person lived in filth beyond comparison. As a result, there was various local plagues and at least two widespread plagues during these years resulting in the death of maybe 1/3 of the population for each plague. The average life span was less than 30 years. The pagans were afraid and deserted their sick and discarded them to die unburied. The Christians fearless of death cared for their sick and buried their dead and the pagans dead.” B
May Disciples today be in unity serving one another because we love Jesus and desire to keep His commandments?
Notes: A- John 17:22-23; B- Rodney Stark in “The Rise of Christianity”;