Author: Emily Acker — Host: Andrew Stevens — Posted on: October 17, 2021
In Galatians 5:22-23, Paul lists the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. I’ve heard of people working on trying to be loving and joyful and faithful because they want to make sure others can see the fruit of the Spirit in them. But this can do more harm than good, because it’s easy to become more focused on how we look and act than how close we are to Jesus. I think our lives should be less about working for these fruits and more about being so close to Jesus that these fruits supernaturally result in our lives. Let’s take a closer look at the metaphor of fruit. During Jesus’s ministry, He said He chose us to bear lasting fruit, but this fruit doesn’t come from us. Rather, Jesus is the vine and weHis forgiven followersare the branches. He said, Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me (John 15:4). The way to remain in Jesus is to remain in His love by following His commands (John 15:10). When a branch is connected to the vine, it’s given everything it needs to grow and produce fruit. Similarly, when we seek to grow closer to God, and as we rely on the Holy Spirit to help us follow His good ways, we are given all we need to grow and produce fruit. God’s Spirit lives in us if we’ve put our trust in Jesus. We rely on Jesus’s death and resurrection to save us, and the Spirit transforms us to be more and more like Jesus. Think about it this way: God is love, and He has given us His love and the ability to love. God is joyful, and He invites us into His joy. Jesus is the Prince of Peace, and He has given us His peace. God is fully patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled and He is transforming us so that we are these things too. The fruit comes out in our lives supernaturally when we are fully devoted to God and walking in His love. We can’t produce fruit without Him. And we must not try. Emily Acker How might a life focused on relationship with Jesus look different from a life focused on fruit? If you want to dig deeper, check out Isaiah 9:6; John 14:27; 15:1-17; Romans 8:29; 1 John 4:8. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20 (NIV)
Galatians 5:13-Galatians 5:23; Galatians 2:20
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