The Fruit of the Spirit

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control; against such there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23

Juicy sweet fruit in a bowl, but how does that relate to the Holy Spirit? Fruit in this passage of scripture is from the Greek word “Karpos,” which means fruit of the trees. I always find it interesting in deciphering a moral or spiritual lesson of what is written in the Bible. What about the word “Spirit”? The Greek word is “Pneuma,” and at the end of Galatians chapter five, the word Spirit is capitalized. This means it is talking about a personality, a person with a character. This is the Holy Ghost, the third person of the Trinity. The Christian character is produced by the Holy Spirit working in us and not by our own self-effort. The Apostle Paul is talking about the character of the Holy Spirit and the fruit it produces. The Holy Spirit will always point to Christ. The character of Christ is love, joy, peace, and so forth. There is no other law that will produce good fruit in which we live and walk.

We are to be conformed into the image of the Son [see Romans 8:29], so we will have the Son’s character working through us to reveal good fruit ready to be picked from the tree. The Spirit helps us to become free from our sinful habits and to become more like Christ. This is the sanctification process of every Christian. The continual renewal by the Holy Ghost inside believers in order to be set apart for Christ. 1st Thessalonians 4:4 states, “that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor.” This is the will of God that we are set apart for the Lord. We are being changed from glory to glory into the image of Christ. Paul exclaims, “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” We must not abuse that liberty we have in Christ and go against anyone and do them harm [see Galatians 5:13]. We are not to be consumed by doing evil to another person. What did Paul say in verse 14 of chapter 5 in Galatians, “for all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”

In order to bear the good fruit of the Spirit one must receive essential nutrients. The conditions of a fruitful life for a Christian are cleansing, abiding, and obedience. Some of us need daily cleansing of unwanted dirt in our life. Abiding and obedience go hand and hand together. With Obedience comes abiding in Christ who is the true vine. Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser.” Just think about how the father God is pruning, lifting up the vines that have fallen, and wrapping them up around the trellis to tie them up. The Father is the vinedresser, and Jesus is the true vine to where we are brought to the Father. How amazing that our heavenly Father comes and takes part in caring for those who are abiding in the vine.

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine, no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

John 15:4

We abide in Christ through faith. And it is through faith that we ask for help to have our heart cleansed on a daily basis. There is not a day that I do not ask God to forgive me for my behavior of complaining, getting angry, or acting selfish. Sometimes we ignore our behavior, but he wants us to take those things to the Lord in prayer. Abiding in the vine is also seeking God’s word. Reading the word daily to feed our mind and spirit for renewal of who we are in Christ. We are to meditate on the will of God that we may “prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God,” [see Romans 12:2]. Jesus said, “if you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you,” [see John 15:7]. Jesus goes on to say that we are to continue in His Love. This is where obedience comes into the picture. Read and ask, and it shall be done unto you. Ask for His love to rule your heart and serve one another through the love He has given us. Abide in Christ and stay connected into the vine and you will find that love, joy, and peace will come forth in your life.

To abide in Christ is to put to death all things related to the flesh such as indecent behavior, fornication, envy, hatred, hostilities, idolatry, and witchcraft, [see Galatians 5:19-21]. Those who are in Christ have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts, [see Galatians 5:24]. This means to take up the cross daily and put to death anything that is contrary to the will of God. Through prayer we put to death these things in the name of Jesus. We ask God to cleanse us from the power of these things that would control our life. We are no longer servants to uncleanness and iniquity, but through the cross of Christ we have become servants of righteousness unto holiness, [see Romans 6:10]. Whatever you yield yourself to is what you will become. Christ has raised us up from death to newness in life. The apostle Paul states, “our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin,” [see Romans 6:6]. This is the victory we have in Christ Jesus. Dead to sin in the body, but alive unto God. Yield yourself to the Holy Father and allow him to be your vinedresser. Remember, it is Jesus through the Father who sends us the Holy Spirit as our comforter, [see John 15:26].

Take time to read the following scriptures: John 15:1-14, and Galatians 5:13-26. As you mature in your walk with God, you become the fruit that others see and enjoy. This is your testimony of the goodness of the Lord, how the Father who is the vinedresser, takes care of you. Let us forever stay within the vine and allow the fruit of the Spirit to come forth in our everyday living as a child of God.

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