Weekly Devotional 7-22-19 The Fruit of the Holy Spirit
“22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control”
It would be safe to say that every rational person would like to enjoy the above-mentioned fruits, but is it possible? Has it ever been possible? Yes? But, the enjoyment of these things is conditional. To begin with, one must be connected to God spiritually. This disqualifies any and all persons who are not spiritually connected To Him. Journeying back to the book of Genesis we read that Adam, mans federal head, had been warned that in the day that he disobeyed God he would die toward Him, that is, he would be spiritually separated from God. This is why Jesus told Nicodemus that in order to see or enter the kingdom of God he must be spiritually born again. This is true of all persons.
As affirmation of this we turn to Paul’s first letter to the Corin-thian Church and read: “9 But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” 10 But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. 11 For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. 13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1st Corinthians 2:9-14). A Spiritual connection must exist. Not knowing God makes it impossible for the natural man to be blessed with the fruits of the Spirit.
Secondly, the fruits of the Holy Spirit are supernatural. They are initiated in and by Him. They cannot be gained any other way; they are an endowment of the Holy Spirit to those whom are in a relationship with God. There is, however, another mitigating factor. Being in relationship with God is only the beginning. There are steps we Christians must take, if we are to be blessed with the fruit of the Holy Spirit. We must walk in Him. That is, we must allow ourselves to be under the Holy Spirit’s authority.
Concerning this Paul writes: “16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God…. 24And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:16-21….24).
Only when we Christians walk in the Spirit, committed to His authority over our lives, can we sense the fruit He has made possible for us. He is after, these things. Being under the authority of the Holy Spirit, said another way, is to be filled with Him. If we allow Him to possess us completely, we will enjoy that which He produces in our lives.
This of course is not a constant experience. When we allow our old natures to rule, our sense of the fruit of the Spirit is com-promised. The fruit is never taken from us, for that would mean the Spirit’s departure, but it does impair our spiritual senses. But, thanks be to God, when we recognizeand “confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, restoring us to fellowship with Him” (see 1st John 1:6-9) restoring to us once again our sense of His abiding fruit.
Transforming power; The Work of God on Behalf of Man
All Scriptural usage is from the NKJB