“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:22, 23
I might be stating the obvious here, but the character of God is different from the character of the fallen nature of mankind. In this series of devotions, I want to look at the characteristics of God and how Christians can grow in these characteristics, or fruits.
Fruit is often used in the Bible to describe results or what is resulting from our relationship with God. The fruit of the spirit in Galatians 5 gives us nine characteristics that will begin to form on the inside of the heart of the maturing, yielded Christian. God wants to form all these characteristics on the inside of us, not just one or two.
The key to growing in God-like characteristics is being in a personal, intimate relationship with God through Jesus Christ. There is no other way. In John 15, Jesus used a vine as an illustration for our relationship with Him. When we abide, or live or find our life, in Him, then we bear fruit, meaning we have results. Our life, being grafted into His life, is how God-fruit can develop from us. As Jesus said, “Apart from Me, you can do nothing.” Separated from God, the fruit of God cannot reproduce. However, in a union with God, we receive from God – not only His characteristics, but answers to prayers, miracles, signs and wonders!
In Genesis 1:27, it says, in the beginning, we were made in God’s image and likeness. To know our intended design, we can look to God. God has these characteristics: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. None of these characteristics, when they become a part of us, will bring harm to ourselves or to others. Instead, the person with these characteristics will be blessed and be a blessing!
In John 15, Jesus calls the Father the vinedresser who prunes us. God removes what isn’t joined to Him because it’s useless, fruitless. After pruning, the plant can produce even more results. After we allow God to remove what isn’t of Him, we will see more results in our character, as well as more results in answers to our prayers, an increase in anointing for miracles, clarity in hearing in voice and other spiritual blessings.
Application: Is there anything in your life that needs to go? Surrender it to the Lord and ask Him to remove it. You are not on your own. The Holy Spirit is the power you need to overcome the dead things in your life.