The Fruit of the Spirit
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
In this portion of scripture, the fruit of the Spirit is not referred to as fruits, but to as ‘fruit’. This tells you of something, it’s not that it is different kinds of fruit that a person can choose to produce one and not have the other, but it is a singular fruit from the same tree or individual.
In writing about the fruit of the Spirit, I have decided to share what Glenn Pease wrote about the fruit of the Spirit, starting with the fruit of Love.
All of these fruits hang together like a cluster of grapes on the vine. You can’t pick and choose which ones you will have and leave the rest alone. They come together, and you have them all, or you don’t have them at all. You cannot say I’ll be loving and joyful, but I’m not going to be kind and good. This is a package deal, and although your personality may favour some of these over others, they all have to be a part of your personality for you to be Christ like. The lack of any one of them can spoil all the rest. They are one, and that is why some prefer the singular of fruit rather than fruits of the Spirit. They are like nine segments of an orange. They are parts, but together they make one orange. There is one fruit of the Spirit in nine segments.
Love never fails, does not mean the loving Christian succeeds in all he or she attempts to accomplish. It means they always please God without fail. God never says, “I am not pleased with your loving spirit toward your brother or your enemy.” God is always pleased with love, and, therefore, love never fails to achieve life’s highest goal, which is to please God. That is why Oswald Chambers said, “Love is the beginning, love is the middle, and love is the end.” God made us in His image, and thus, we are made to love, and when we do we fulfil our very purpose for being. It is life’s highest success. What is the purpose of life? It is to become what God made us to be-images of Him. This is achieved by bearing the fruit of the Spirit, for these nine fruits are love displayed in all of its aspects.” Someone has described them like this
Joy is love’s cheerfulness.
Peace is love’s confidence
Patience is love’s composure
Kindness is love’s consideration
Goodness is love’s character
Faithfulness is love’s constancy
Gentleness is love’s comeliness
Self-control is love’s conquest.
The point is, the more these nine fruits characterize your life, the more you fulfil your purpose for being, for you are a reflection of His love, which is to say, you are Christ like. Some years ago New York City had a murder mystery that was finally solved by the arrest of several notorious criminals. One was Jack Rose, who after he was convicted and imprisoned said, “I always believed that there must be a God somewhere. But when I gave Him thought, I felt He was so far away, and so occupied with great things, that He knew nothing about me. I am sure I never would have become a criminal if the thought had ever entered my mind that God cared anything about me.” The world is filled with people who do not know that God loves them because there is no Christian who is communicating that love to them. The poet says
Do you know the world is dying?
For a little bit of love?
Everywhere we hear them sighing,
For a little bit of love.
When we make choices to communicate the love of God to the lost, then we know we have gone beyond natural love to bearing the fruit of the Spirit. Every Christian needs to be praying the prayer of Dr. Will Houghton, former president of Moody Bible Institute.
Love this world through me,
Lord this world of broken men,
Thou didst love through death, Lord
Oh, love in me again!
Souls are in despair, Lord.
Oh, make me know and care;
When my life they see,
May they behold Thee,
Oh, love the world through me.
Even the desire to pray this prayer is a sign that you are growing in the garden of your life the fruit of love.
The Fruit of the Spirit