In our second church study of the Holy Spirit, we took up a new topic — the fruit of the Spirit. Good fruit in our lives does not come through self development — it is a gift from God. Our redemption has a purpose — to transform us into fruit-bearers. This is called sanctification — the process of becoming Christlike.
In Galatians we find a detailed description of what this means:
“So live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. They are in conflict with one another, so that you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies and the like. …..
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self control. ” Galatians 16:5-22
You may take note that love is central to the fruit. The sinful acts listed destroy love, while the fruit of the Spirit increases love. Why would this be? Because God is love, and His desire for us as His creation is that we love Him and love one another. We were made to live, not for ourselves, but for the glory of God. So,
“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” Galatians 5:24
In other words, LOVE.
For more on the Fruit of the Spirit see these posts: