When we place our faith in Christ Jesus, there is no benefit in being circumcised or being uncircumcised. What is important is faith expressing itself in love. Galatians 5:6
We tend to forget how simple our faith is. We have this propensity for over complicating it. The list of what we consider to be important is long—and grows longer all the time. Think about it: what do you think of as important to your expression of faith? It’s hard to make that answer short and limited to a few things. It’s hard not to include our own personal preferences about worship style, liturgy, and routines of gathering. Paul doesn’t seem to have this struggle.
What is important is faith expressing itself in love.
Faith—not just in theory or in our minds—but faith expressing itself through love.
There is no benefit to doing this religious ritual or that religious ritual as a means for earning God’s favor or acceptance. Sure, religious expressions and practices have their place and serve some purposes that are valuable. But at the end of the day what’s important isn’t these things.
Faith expressing itself in love. What does that look like in our homes? What does that look like in the work place, the grocery store, with neighbors? What does it look like when we seek to have our faith expressed in love? For each of us it’ll undoubtedly be different, but still the same. Paul’s point is that faith isn’t expressed with words or rituals and routines of a religion. Faith is expressed by how we live; by the ways we treat others and seek them to serve them.
What does it look like today for our faith to speak by loving? Our faith was never meant to be a series of words we recite or a thing we cling to when times are tough. It’s a vehicle for loving, a means to serving and sharing God-come-to-earth with the world.
When did it become important for faith to be expressed by long, dry explanations about God? This God recklessly pursued us until it killed him. And then continued to pursue us right through death and back into life. New, full life. This faith we have should not be expressed in words and windy speeches, or in dead practices that do little and mean less. This faith in a God so relentless and wildly loving can only truly be expressed by loving as well.