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Spirits evident fruit
We are continuing on with looking at the evident fruit of the Spirit in the heart and the hands (actions) of the believer.
We do not make the fruit, the Lord does, and we are to cultivate it so that it grows in us.
Previously we have looked at:
Fruit of holy living
Fruit of good works
Fruit of praise
Then we discussed that of the 9 elements of the Spirits fruit in the passage that
First three are Godward, or towards our relationship with God
Second three are manward, or towards our relationship with each other
Third set are selfward; these are inward graces within the heart and life of the believer.
We discussed
Love, the love of God poured out, the love of God coming from within to others.
Joy, this inward peace we have because we know our sins are forgiven.
This is a joy that is not linked to circumstances but to God.
Peace: this is peace with God, peace with others, harmony with others that comes from setting on our mind on the things above.
Then we started into the manward graces, longsuffering, this is being long-tempered, patient , is is the quality of self-restraint in the face of provocation.
That is where we stopped last week, so now may we open she scripture and look at it in context and will pick up from there now.
What do you see, what do you notice, what sticks out to you?
Spirits fruit Described
From being long-suffering brings about kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
So, may we take a few minutes and look at these things described.
Kindness - “Chrestotes” - sympathetic kindliness or sweetness of temper which puts others at ease (Ps106:1; Lk6:35; Eph2:7)
What a great quality, one that makes others be at peace, at ease when they are with you.
It is the quality, fruit of kindness, and gentleness wrapped into one.
It is lovingkindness as seen in (Ps106:1)
It is displayed in the kindness of God
Look at that verse, what is the instruction, and why is it given?
- love your enemies do good, because God was good (kind) to us.
And look at this, the surpassing riches of grace “in” kindness
Those led by the Spirit will display the fruit of kindness in their lives.
It is a garment we put on (Col3:12)
What a great list, look at those qualities!
It is our attitude in treatment of others (Eph4:31-32)
Kindness when developed in the believer leaves behind the things in (v.31) and displays the qualities in (v.32)
May we be a people who display kindness that puts others at ease.
May we be a people who demonstrate kindness to others in the way we deal with them so they know we are Christ’s disciple.
How can we manifest, demonstrate, develop the fruit of kindness?
When kindness is put into action, it is love, it is also the quality of goodness our next item to look at.
Goodness -Active goodness, benevolent (complete word study dictionary Act4:32-37; Act9:36-39)
This is active goodness, it is benevolence for one another
A great example of this is Barnabas (have everyone turn there to Acts4)
What active qualities of goodness do you see in this passage?
Another example was Dorcus (Act9:36-39)
She was full of good works and charitable deeds
Even in her death her goodness was demonstrated and remembered.
So those who are led by the Spirit will have this quality in them, our part is to display, demonstrate, develop this quality so it can come out of us.
Goodness in our lives
We were created for this purpose (Eph2:10)
You were created for good works
We are commanded to do demonstrate it (Gal6:10)
We are to do goo works to all people
Gentleness, goodness and kindness equate to love in action.
This is sowing seeds of peace even when you are being persecuted, so it is longsuffering.
It is sowing seeds of kindness in lieu of others sowing seeds of evil and not repaying evil for evil, we cannot do it in the flesh we need to power of the Spirit to do it.
So let the spirit manifest this in you!
That now brings us to the last three the selfward graces of the Spirit.
So you are born of the Spirit to walk in the Spirit by the power of the Spirit that dwells in you.
Now we get to the fruit that is inward.
Faithfulness “pistis” - a conviction or belief in respect to God and Christ.
It is the virtue of reliability.
(Pro20:6; Ps12:1-2)
Thayer bible dictionary says it is the character of one who can be relied on.
Vines says is one who an be trusted and is reliable
Too often it is claimed but is not evident; look what the teacher said
Not easy to find, it has to be looked for, but in the Christian it should be evident.
It is not uncommon for it not to be seen, it was a problem before Paul wrote this passage
What do you see in these verses?
Those who are led by the Spirit will display,, demonstrate and develop the fruit of faithfulness
Faithfulness is essential to the Christian (Rev2:10)
We need to be faithful unto death as it says in Rev2:10)
Faithfulness displayed when we use our talants (Mt25:21, 24-26)
Faithfulness demonstrated in our duties (Heb10:24-25) and our relationships (Eph5:22-23; Eph6:1-3)
It is in our relationships, husband/wife, father/child, master/slave.
(Eph5:22-23, 6:1-3)
Gentleness/Meekness “prautes” by implication humility,
(Gentleness picture)
Aristotle says “the ability to bear reproaches and slights with moderation, and not to embark on revenge quickly, ad not to be easily provoked to anger, but to be free from bitterness and contentiousness, having tranquility and stability in the spirit.”
- from On virtues and vices
Barclay says “it is that virtuous quality by which we treat all men with perfect courtesy, that we can rebuke without candor, that we can argue without intolerance, and that we can face the truth without resentment, that we can be angry and sin not, that we can be gentle and yet not weak.”
Meekness is a quality displayed by Moses (Num12:3) and by Jesus (Mt11:28-30)
Gentleness/meekness in the life of the Christian
It is a manner in which we receive the Word (Jm1:21)
It is displayed in how we deal with our brother (Gal6:1)
It is how we share our hope with others (1Pt3:15)
So gentleness/meekness is power under control, using the right amount of power at the right time in the right situation brings us to our next point.
(Self -control picture)
Self-control “egkratei” means one holding himself in; one who masters his desires ad passions.
Thayer says it is especially mastering sensual appetites
McKnight adds “where this virtue subsits, temptation can have little influence.”
Self-control in the life of the Christian
It is necessary to overcome the works of the flesh (Gal5:19-20)
It aids us in overcoming the works of the flesh, by the power of the Spirit (Rom8:11-14)
We must be willing to stand strong in the power of God’s might (Eph6:12-18)
Self-control is using wisdom, knowledge and understanding that you obtain from God’s Word coupled with the power of God’s Spirit so we can walk in a worthy manner, able to walk in the Spirit and that is what we are going onto next.
Self-control in the life of the believer
It is in the victory over the flesh; and is needed to have it (Gal5:19-20)
It is the Spirit that aids us when we pray (Eph3:16, 20)
It is the Christian’s willingness to stand firm, stand stronge in the power of God’s might (Eph6:12-18)
It is possible for the old nature, the flesh, to counterfeit some of the fruit of the Spirit, but it cannot produce it.
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