Lesson 26 - The Fruit of the Spirit

Although we will study the work of the Holy Spirit in greater depth in future chapters, it would be wrong to end this "New Creation" study without talking a little bit about the fruit (character traits) the Spirit works in the new creation. Let's start by looking at a scripture we already read in chapter four:

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. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (Galatians 5: 22-25)

Is is the Holy Spirit who works these "fruits" in us. These fruits of the Spirit are in direct opposition to the acts of the sinful nature. This is why we are told we must put the sinful.nature to death. We cannot grow in the fruits of the Spirit if we are still willingly following the acts of the old man. We must keep in step with the Spirit. He will lead us, but we must follow. We must not fight the work He is doing in us.

    Read Colossians 3: 1-17. (you should recognize the first four verses.)

Using this section, let's look at the fruit of the earthly (sinful) nature first. The list includes sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires, greed, idolatry, anger, rage, malice, slander, filthy language, and lying. We could easily come up with at least a few more, but this list probably will give us more than enough to think about for now!

Now let's consider the fruit of the Spirit. God wants us to live in compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, love, peace, the Word of Christ, and gratitude (thankfulness to God). Notice how many of the same fruits are also listed in Gaiatians 5: 22-23 above. Galatians also adds the fruits of joy, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control.

Point to Ponder:

Now that we know the fruit of the Spirit in the new creation, and the fruit of the sinful nature in the old man, let's examine ourselves daily to see if we are keeping in step with the Spirit! Don't be discouraged - it takes time! If we put the acts of the old man to death daily, we learn to live as new creations!