The Marks of Jesus

Galatians 6v17: “From now on let no one cause me trouble, for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus.”

If you follow Jesus, who was beaten and crucified, you can expect to get scars yourself. Paul talks about his in 2 Corinthians 11: “imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; for a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches.”

So if you want to avoid suffering, the Judaisers had the right idea: you’ll want to leave the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ behind, because faithfully following Jesus will leave marks on you.

Paul has suffered for the sake of the gospel, the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. That’s one of the ways you know you can trust his message, because he’s not just telling people what they want to hear in order to gain popularity, but he keeps preaching faithfully even when it costs him.

Apparently that word translated “marks” is the word used for branding of slaves. Paul bears the marks of Jesus because he is Jesus’ slave, so he’s asking people not to cause him trouble because he’s working for Jesus. If Jesus is your Lord, you won’t want to cause trouble for Jesus’ servants.

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