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Dr. Ed Smith
01.01.1970 01:0000    Comments: 1    Categories: news      Tags:

Article written by Joshua Smith explaining the relationship between fruits of the Spirit and self-effort.

Experiencing His Fruit

     “But the fruit of the Spirit is…” (Galatians 5:22)

     In this passage, fruit is the Greek word “karpos,” which means benefit, harvest, produce, or profit.  So, the verse could be read… “But the (benefit) of the Spirit is…” “But the (harvest) of the Spirit is…” “But the (produce) of the Spirit is…” “But the (profit) of the Spirit is…”

     The things which are listed in the 22nd and 23rd verse are, therefore, the outcome, benefit, and evidence of the SPIRIT’s work in us, NOT rewards that we earn, muscles that we build, or disciplines that we practice.

     Despite what we may believe, desire, or do, WE CAN NOT LOVE! We are incapable of choosing to be joyful, peaceful, or patient. And any attempt we make at being kind, good, faithful, gentle, or controlled will be ultimately bound to OUR personal strength; our weak, temporary, human strength and not a by-product of the presence of God's Spirit.


“If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:25)
     Here, the word translated walk is “stoicheo,” which means to walk orderly, to follow, and to be in a row. In other words, we are not to attempt to take the place of, fill the shoes of, or play the role of the Holy Spirit. We are to simply align ourselves with Him by admitting the beliefs to which we hold, acknowledge the feelings that these beliefs produce, and own-up to the choices we make that are motivated by these negative emotions. After doing so, we are then able to willfully open ourselves to His response. The Spirit will then offer His perspective and His truth regarding those admitted beliefs.

     “Let us not become boastful, challenging one another, envying one another.” (Galatians 5:26)

     If we acted in any of these ways, we would, in essence, be attempting to place praise and honor onto the improper and inappropriate place. If we are boastful, we believe ourselves higher than we ought. If we attempt to challenge others, we think them lower than we ought. And if we envy others, we think of ourselves lower than we ought. Each of these beliefs, and subsequent actions, are improper and are not based in the truth given to us through Scripture. None of them attribute the fruits of the Spirit to the Spirit, but rather the individual’s strength, ability, and willpower.

     So it is evident we ourselves do not produce the fruits listed in Galatians five. They are the fruits of the Spirit not behaviors we perform. We are entirely incapable of producing or exercising them. They are created and regulated, exclusively, by the Holy Spirit. He openly and readily offers them to us to experience. However, He does allow us the freedom to choose not to accept and experience what He offers. When we acknowledge what we believe, turn to Him, and accept His truth, we are free to experience the fruit He fiercely desires to produce within and through us.

Joshua Adam Smith

 
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  •  IZONPRIZE wrote 2447 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I love word studies! Thank you for sharing this one!  I love the way you amplified this verse...the harvest of the spirit is....the produce of the spirit is....

    This reminds me of John 15 beginning with verse 1,  
    I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.
    He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
    I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

     
       
     
     
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