As a person who has grown up learning about the Bible, it is easy for me to roll my eyes and think lightly of the fruit of the Spirit. For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about- the fruit of the spirit is a concept Paul discusses in his letter the the church in Galatia. In Galatians 5:22-23, Paul writes, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. All these attributes illustrate the nature of the Holy Spirit. Often times it’s easy to sum up such qualities into simply, “being a good person”. However, it goes much deeper than that.
The fruit of the Spirit can only come from God alone. When God transforms our hearts and we receive the Holy Spirit, we now contain the ability to reflect Christ through the way we live, the way we speak, and the way we treat others. The unique thing about the fruit of the Spirit is that it is God’s way of presenting Himself through us. Everything that the fruit of the Spirit is, God also is. God is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. All of these attributes are the explanation for the concept of God’s Perfection. His holiness is described through His consistency in His perfection. The perfect sanctified King is sanctifying us day after day as we pursue a life that reflects His nature. In doing so, we must focus on God’s love and pray that it transpires in our interaction with the world.
The love talked about in this text is God’s love. As believers, we understand that God’s unconditional love is what distinguishes Him from any other being in this world. Notice the order in which the fruits of the Spirit are listed. Number one, is love. The biblical number for unity happens to be, ONE. Thank about all the unity we experience in our lives; from our family, friends, and people we spend time with. As Christians we are called to be unified with Christ and other believers through the power of God’s love. We are also called to obey the two most important laws: love God, and love others, as talked about in Matthew 12:30-31. This simply goes to prove that God’s love is overwhelmingly more significant than any earthly affection we are capable of. The only way we can exruberate the rest of the fruits (joy, peace, patience, etc.), is by thoroughly holding firm onto God’s love.
Against such things there is no law. (Gal. 5:23) This verse does not mean living for Christ exempts you from the law. It simply means, no where in scripture is there a law that contradicts the fruits of the Spirit. It also implies that keeping the law becomes much easier when the love of the God is displayed through the character of the Holy Spirit. As we grow in our faith and study God’s word, we become more and more like Him. We are all sinners who are completely incapable of being perfect. However, we can display God’s love by letting the fruit of the Spirit impact others. I firmly believe none of the fruits can be exemplified until the first one is understood. God’s love is what saves us. It has changed the world and will continue to do so. If we wish for all the fruits to be unified in our lives we must first focus on the unifier, LOVE.
After reading this blog post, seek interactions in which you can shine the light of the Holy Spirit. The more we meditate on God’s word and focus on letting the fruits of the Spirit overflow in our life, the easier it becomes to see the world through God’s eyes and find joy in peace amongst pain and suffering. My last post was on the armor of God; the preparation for spiritual battle in a broken world. My goal for this post is to encourage you in letting the Spirit that lives inside you shine in a way that shows God’s love in a broken world.
Make your prayer for this week to exemplify Christ through love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. Ask God for opportunity and focus on His love. You will begin to grow in a spiritually healthy way, impacting those around you.