“From now on let no one trouble me, for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus”
From now on let no one trouble me,
Paul gives the Galatians a challenge to look at the price he paid for taking a stand for the cross of Christ, the doctrine of grace. Paul calls for an end to the conflict over law and grace.
for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus
The word “marks” is the Greek word stigma. A stigma was a permanent brand, tattoo, or mark burnt into the skin. Paul carried brands around like a cow or a slave. It was a sign of ownership of a cow or slave. Paul’s stigma was a branding for his service in standing for the grace principle. Paul clearly demonstrated the price he paid for the cross. The Galatians saw that themselves when he was in Galatia.
The idea of “bear” is to undergo experiences that mark one as the slave of some master. That is the burden Paul bore. He bore or endured the burden of the cross.
Christians should carry the indelible mark of belonging to Christ.
People who take a stand for the grace principle of the cross will pay the price. We must count the cost.
“But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24).
“From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness— besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches” (2 Corinthians 11:24-28).
A good measure of our belief system is how much we are willing to pay for it. Do you have the scars to prove it?
We should be careful about assailing the enlistees of the army of Christ. Keep your static to yourself. All annoyances are a distraction from the real reason we are here.
All Christians must carry the blood-stained banner of the cross. They will not be the most popular or pleasing people, but they will be faithful to God. We should view ourselves as soldiers, not floating along on a rosy bed of ease. People should clearly mark us as those who belong to Christ, who bear His indelible mark.