FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” Galatians 5:22, 23.
The fruit of the Spirit are Christian virtues produced, not from our own nature, but by the inflow of Christ’s nature into our lives. He is the vine. We are the branches bringing forth precious fruit for His pleasure.
Understanding the fruit of the Spirit unlocks for us the riches of the Christ-centered personality. These fruits are not separate traits from which we can choose those most appealing to us. They all grow together and complement each other. The fruit of the flesh brings death and destruction but the fruit of the Spirit brings life and peace.
fruit of the Spirit is…LOVE
“By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” John 13:35.
Genuine Christian love is an intense desire to please God and to do good to mankind. This is the fulfilling of the divine law.
fruit of the Spirit is…JOY
“The Kingdom of God is not meat and drink but righteousness, and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost” Romans 14:17.
Joy is the exultation that arises from a sense of God’s mercy and love toward us. It is like a well containing sweet water. It is something to be shared.
fruit of the Spirit is…PEACE
“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” Philippians 4:7.
Jesus Christ is the Prince of Peace. Peace comes only as we let Him rule in our lives. Peace is not just the absence of conflict or withdrawal, but a deep abiding rightness in the heart.
fruit of the Spirit is…LONGSUFFERING
“Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another…even as Christ forgave you” Colossians 3:13.
It is not easy to bear with the faults and irritations of others but remember that God has borne long with ours and that, if He had not, we would have been lost.
fruit of the Spirit is…GENTLENESS
“And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient” II Timothy 2:24.
The more spiritually mature we become, the gentler we are. Take time for tenderness. It may work an unexpected miracle. Think deeply of the personality of our Lord until that tenderness spills over into our lives.
fruit of the Spirit is…GOODNESS
“Ye are the salt of the earth…salt is good: but if the salt have lost his saltiness, wherewith will ye season it? Have salt in yourselves” Matthew 5:13 and Mark 9:50.
Each man has in him the potential for great goodness or great evil. Our character influences everyone around us. Goodness will cost self-discipline, self-sacrifice, self-control and courage to stand against popular wrongs. The only basis or standard for goodness is God’s Word. We have no goodness in ourselves. We must draw from the Holy Spirit the goodness of God Himself.
fruit of the Spirit is…FAITH
“Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of the Lord” Matthew 25:21.
The fruit of faith speaks of faithfulness or fidelity. God has trusted the work of His Kingdom to His sons. The Christian does not go about his own tasks, neglecting the work of the Lord. He has a faithful, dependable spirit that can be trusted. He will be found labouring in God’s will until God calls him home.
fruit of the Spirit is…MEEKNESS
Jesus said, “…I am meek and lowly in heart…” Matthew 11:29.
Meekness is our attitude of submission toward God. When our attitude toward God is one of meekness, our attitude toward man is flavoured with the same spirit. Meekness causes us to submit our wills to God’s will.
fruit of the Spirit is…TEMPERANCE
“Let your moderation be known unto all men” Philippians 4:5.
The Spirit-filled life is like the river that is channelled for greatest good. The man filled with the Spirit will have self-control, refraining from extremes. As we put on Christ we will not mourn the self-denial of temperance, but rather rejoice in the fullness of God’s abundant life.
Stay with the vine. Let the flow of God’s Spirit bring sweet fruit into your life. The Master walks in His vineyards looking for the flourishing vine, the tender grape, and the sweet fruit of Christian maturity.