Galatians 4:18 Be Zealous For The Right Purpose

It is fine to be zealous, provided the purpose is good, and to be so always, not just when I am with you. Galatians 4:18

Being zealous is one showing great enthusiasm or excitement for something. Nearly every person has something that they are zealous about. Some are zealous about sports, or movies, or music, or clothing. Others get zealous about politics or religion, or philosophy.

Whatever a person is zealous about, they seek and push with all of their focus and abilities. It is what gives them energy and excitement. Some will use their zealous drives for good, while others use it for the negative.

As Paul talks about those following the law, he brings up about people being very zealous. He says it is good to be zealous, as long as the purpose is good and to be so continually.

It is very easy for a believer to be zealous about following God when he is around other believers. Yet, when alone or with non-believers, many drop their zealous push for following God. They allow themselves to fall into sinful practices and turn their hearts away from God. Often they become zealous about the things of this world, rather than the things of God.

As Jesus walked on the earth, He was zealous to do the mission God had sent Him to do. He pushed hard to spread the message from God for salvation of the people. He was so focused and zealous that He did not allow anything to detract Him from His mission, including death upon the cross.

Every believer needs to the zealous feelings that Jesus had. They need to strive with all of their heart, soul, mind and strength to do the work God has called them to do. Their zealous purpose must be the eternal, God-focused purpose, not the temporary, worldly purpose of this world.

At the very moment you chose to believe in Jesus, you were given a purpose by God to be on this earth. It is to be His witness and to worship God.

Instead of being zealous about the temporary things of this world, focus on the eternal things of God.

What can you do to build God’s kingdom? How can you worship God more? How can you encourage others to build God’s kingdom more and worship God more?

Be zealous for the right purpose in this life–God’s eternal purpose.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will know God’s purpose for your life; that you will be zealous to do God’s work; that you will be zealous to worship God more; and that you will be zealous for God at all times, everywhere you go.

Galatians 4:17 People Up To No Good

Those people are zealous to win you over, but for no good. What they want is to alienate you from us, so that you may have zeal for them. Galatians 4:17

Most people want everyone else to be on their side. They do not want to be set apart as different and become isolated.

In order to gain everyone’s approval, they will either change their ways to fit in with everyone else, or they will have extreme zeal to get everyone to change to their ways. More often they are fighting to get everyone else to change. Very few people want to change themselves.

After describing some people who were zealous for following the law of God, but not the Spirit of God, Paul says that those people are zealous to win the believers over. They want to separate them from true believers in God to have zeal for them and their ways.

Throughout the church there are many people who focus upon the legal laws of God. They focus on what they should do or not do and impose those laws upon others legalistically. Focus is put on how to dress, what can be done and not done, how much they pray or read the Bible, what day they go to church and many more laws, rather than the heart of service to God and for God.

Jesus had not come to enforce more legal laws upon the people, but to change the heart to love God and want to serve and obey Him. He had fulfilled the law of God, so that anyone who had faith in Him could be saved.

Stepping back into focusing on the law, destroys what Jesus did on the cross. Every believer must have salvation by faith in Jesus, not by following the law.

There will be some who will tell you what you can and cannot do in order to be saved. Doing or not doing things does not save you. Salvation is only by belief in the work of Jesus.

The works that you do are to be done out of love and thankfulness of what Jesus has already done for you. Do not allow yourself to be caught up in the zeal of following the law and separating yourself from a true follow of Jesus.

Be zealous for believing Jesus and following Jesus. Be zealous to obey God because of what He has done.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will have faith in what Jesus did for you; that you will serve God out of love for what He has done; that you will be zealous for a relationship with God; and that God will keep you from being led astray.

Acts 22:3-4a Zealous For, But Not Following

I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city. I studied under Gamaliel and was thoroughly trained in the law of our ancestors. I was just as zealous for God as any of you are today. I persecuted the followers of this Way to their death, Acts 22:3-4a

There are many people are extreme zealots for certain issues or groups. They will do whatever it takes to support that issue or group. Some of these issues can be good, while others can be very bad.

Often it is looked down upon a person who is extremely zealous about something. People desire others to walk a middle ground, rather than be extreme.

Paul tells the people that he was just as zealous for God as they were. He persecuted believers in Jesus.

There are some people who are very zealous for God and His word, but are zealous in the wrong way. They are living life their own way and doing things the way they think God wants them to do, but are actually not following God’s leading.

Some in the church will hold to old customs and traditions, persecuting newer believers. On the opposite side, there will be new believers who persecute the older ones, desiring only new things.

In both cases, it can be common that they are not truly following God. They are doing things their own way as Paul did in persecuting believers of Jesus. It is easy to be zealous for God, but not following His way or leading.

Every believer needs to seek what God desires of him and then do that thing. He must be zealous for God, but in a way that he is doing only what God asks of him.

As a believer, you must be zealous for God. Be willing to stand up for God in every situation that you face. Do not be afraid to stand strong and true for God.

However, as you stand up for God, make sure that you are doing what God desires. Do not allow yourself to do things out of personal, selfish ambition for God. Paul was zealous for God, but in the wrong way.

Humble yourself before God and do what He desires, building His kingdom in His way and in His timing. Being zealous for God is great as long as it is guided by His Holy Spirit.

Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will know what God desires of you; that you will be zealous for God and His ways; that you will be His witness in this world; and that you will only do what God calls you to do.

Romans 10:2-3 Wrong Zeal For God

“For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own they did not submit to God’s righteousness.” Romans 10:2-3

Paul is talking about the Israelites. He would love to see them saved. Here he points out that they were very zealous for God, but they did not know the righteousness that God provided. In the end they were building their own rules of what righteousness was and refused to accept God’s righteousness.

Things have not changed for people. Many people (at least in America) believe in God and attempt to stand for what He wants. In their zeal for God they get extremely judgmental and start to make rules on various things that God never directly stated anything. They are making up their own rules on what it means to be righteous before God.

Some examples of these types of rules are: no playing cards, no dancing, wearing only certain types of clothing, and eating only certain foods. While all of these things may be good for a certain person, or good rules to live by, none of them are absolute rules by God. None of these make a person more or less righteous before God.

Only in Jesus is a person righteous at all. It is by His grace and mercy that you can be a righteous person.

Jesus did lay down some rules and many principles to live by. They were guidelines on how to make choices in life. They are to guide you in how to live a righteous life before God and do His will.

You need to be zealous for God. You need to get excited and tell everyone about God. You need to stand strong and true for God and His Word. But in all of this you must be standing in the right position. It must all be based on the righteousness of Jesus. It must be done with His love, grace and mercy.

Do not be zealous the way the world gets zealous: judgmental, condemning, better-than-thou, and demanding. Don’t just give a bunch of rules to live by.

Strive to point all to Jesus. Show people the righteousness that Jesus provides. Be zealous for God in Jesus.

I pray today that you will know the righteousness that Jesus provides; that you will be zealous for Jesus; that you will tell everyone about Jesus; and that you will be zealous with God’s love, grace and mercy.