Related Scriptures:
 
  • Gal 5:19 - 21

  • Gal. 5:22-23

    Matt. 7:16

    Matt 5:5

    Luk. 8:11

    John 1:1

    John 15

     

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    by Rudi Swanepoel

    One of the revelations the Lord shared with us during this season is the relevance of the 9-fold fruit of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Believer. Did you know that the Holy Spirit is at work in you and wants to produce amazing qualities in your life?

    But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness, gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [that can bring a charge]. Gal 5:22, 23 AMP

    In this powerful portion of scripture the Lord reveals to us the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Why are they called fruit? What is their significance? How can we have more fruit in our lives? In this study we will look at word definitions, biblical interpretations and apply these revelations in our lives today.

    Let's start with a few important comments and then look at each of the nine slices individually.
    1. The word "fruit" here is used in the singular. Paul is not referring to nine different fruits. Think of an orange with nine slices. Each slice carries the same properties (texture, taste, etc.) of the fruit. The slices together form a whole. God's design for these 9 qualities was to function together. It speaks of the unity of the character of God as reproduced in each of these qualities.

    2. This 9-fold fruit is the visible expression of the Holy Spirit's power working inwardly in the life of the Believer. Their appearance is a result of God's power activated in you through the Holy Spirit. The works of the flesh on the other hand is a visible expression of hidden lusts.
     

    3. According to Matthew 7:16 people can be recognized by their fruit. If you display the qualities of Gal. 5:22 others will enjoy the value of God's work in you. If you display the works of the flesh they merely point to a hidden flaw covered over by layers of self.
     

    4. The Greek word fruit here means "to be plucked, to seize, to catch, to pull". They appear in your life and are made available for others to enjoy! Nothing like plucking fresh fruit from a tree and enjoying its natural sweetness! The fruit of the Holy Spirit in you will stir an appetite for the same in the lives of those around you.
     

    5. Fruit is a result of the growth of seed and the fruit very often carries the seed for the next harvest. Jesus identified the seed as the Word of God. (Luke 8:11) When you read, study and welcome the word of God into your life you give the Holy Spirit in you the building blocks to fashion His fruit in you. When His fruit is displayed through you, their "enjoyment" plants more seed for the Holy Spirit to work with. The Word and the Spirit works together toward multiplication. The more seed, the more fruit and vice versa. Jesus said: "If you are in Me and I am in you, you will bear much and abundant fruit." Jesus is the Word. (John 1:1) See also Heb. 12:11.

    Now let's look at each slice of this amazing fruit the Holy Spirit produces in you:

    1. Love (Greek: "agape")
    This word here is a special word. It refers to the God-kind of love. Satan's best attempt to reproduce this kind of love ends in mere lust. Man's best rendering is conditional affection. Agape is unconditional love. It is used to describe the Father's attitude towards the Son (John 17:26) and to those who believe in the Son of God (John 14:21 / John 3:16). According to the Vines Dictionary of Bible words agape is "a love that is not drawn out because of the excellence of its objects but because of the divine will in deliberate choice." This love does not love because it gets something in return or because those being loved are deserving; it loves because that is what it does! It expresses the essential nature of God.

    Imagine being able to love like this! Because of the work of God's Spirit in your life you can!

    2. Joy (Greek: "chara")
    This word means "cheerfulness or gladness". Its root means "to be cheerful or to be well-off; to be glad". Joy is so much more than mere happy moments or a laughing matter. Joy originates because of a more meaningful source. Hebrews 12:2 says: "looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has set down at the right hand of the throne of God". What was this joy that was set before Him? And how could this joy be strong enough to cause Him to endure the cross and despise the shame such suffering would bring? Christ's joy was you and I! Humanity is the object of His joy. His unconditional love for us stirs a phenomenal joy because of us. His sacrifice on that cross, dying for our sins would position us towards salvation; fellowship with God Almighty! That is the joy that was set before Him! Mere laughter or happiness has no real root. Both have superficial causes. Real joy as a fruit of the Spirit is deeply rooted in a person! We are God's joy and He is ours! "The joy of the Lord is our strength." The Gospel ignites real joy! It is founded in the salvation message. Want to bring joy to the Lord? Share the Gospel with someone. It is always connected to redemption. Luke 15:7 says: "there will be more joy in heaven over one wicked person who repents. . ." and in Luke 15:10 "I tell you there is joy among and in the presence of the angels of God over one wicked person who repents." Because joy is not a reaction to emotion or connected to circumstance but rooted in the presence of God in our lives, we can rejoice in the Lord always. (Phil. 4:4) Not only is joy a slice of the 9-fold fruit of the Holy Spirit it also unites with righteousness and peace to form the Kingdom of God! (Rom. 14:17)

    3. Peace (Greek: "eirene")
    This word means "to join" and by implication it means prosperity. It is translated peace, quietness, rest and one. (According to the Strong's Concordance). It describes harmonious relationships between men and nations. It speaks of freedom from molestation (Luke 11:21; 19:42; Acts 9:31). The corresponding Hebrew word "shalom" primarily means wholeness (Josh 8:31) and is connected to salvation - "soteria". It also means to be "finished" (Neh 6:15), "to be made perfect" (Isa 42:19), and "full" (Ruth 2:12)

    Isn't it wonderful that a slice of the amazing work of the Holy Spirit in your life is to promote and establish peace and harmonious relationships with people and ultimately nations? It brings you to a place of wholeness, fulfillment and completion. Peace also is connected to salvation. A saved soul is a soul at peace because the Prince of peace, Jesus has become his/her commander in chief. The slice will also promote prosperity in your life.

    4. Longsuffering (Greek: "makrothumia")
    The word used here means "with long temper" or "to bear with" or "patience". According to the Vines Dictionary of Bible Words it "is that quality of self restraint in the face of provocation which does not hastily retaliate or promptly punish; it is the opposite of anger, associated with mercy. It does not surrender to circumstance or succumb to trial. It is connected to hope." Hebrews 6:12 identifies this patience endurance as one of the catalysts to receive the promises of God.

    The Holy Spirit stirs in us a patience that enables us not be crushed by circumstances nor give up in the face of adversity. It allows us to draw strength from the foundation of our faith that God will accomplish what He has promised in our lives.

    5. Gentleness (Greek: "chrestotes")
    This word means "usefulness / moral excellence in character or demeanor" The root word means "to employ / to use / useful / easy / better / good / kind / gracious". It speaks of what is right and upright. (Rom. 3:12), the kindness of heart (Rom. 2:4 , Eph. 2:7). It is goodness in action.

    The enemy wants to render you useless or abused (from: abnormal use) in everything you do. The Holy Spirit on the other hand has the ability to make you useful in any given situation. To find what is easy, better or useful in deeds and words!

    6. Goodness (Greek: "agathosune")
    It means "virtue" or "beneficence" even "the act of generous giving, with the implication of its relationship to goodness, to be generous / generosity" (According to Louw & Nida) Imagine the help of the Holy Spirit in your giving! He make you generous. He leads you in your giving. Never again will you have to feel guilty because of a lack of faith when it comes to giving. You will also not have to succumb to the manipulation of man to give. You can simply rely on this precious slice of the fruit of the Holy Spirit growing in you to lead you in your generosity!

    7. Faith (Greek: "pistis")
    This word means "persuasion / assurance / belief / faith / fidelity / reliability / faithfulness". It is a very powerful slice of the fruit of the Holy Spirit. We know that hearing the word of God stirs faith in our lives (Romans 8:17) Here we find another way for faith to rise in our hearts; through the active work of the Holy Spirit in us! This is wonderful! The father of sick child, when asked if he believed said: "Lord I believe, but help my unbelief." (Mark 9:24) Because God is trustworthy we can believe in Him!

    Another aspect of this faith is fidelity. The Holy Spirit's work in you causes you to be a reliable person; one that is faithful and dependable. These are valuable qualities not often found in this world. It makes you a better spouse and parent to your children. It places you in strategic job situations were you are a valuable asset to your employer. It allows God to entrust you with the greatest news of all time; the Gospel of Jesus. He can depend on you to spread His message of love to lost and dying souls.

    8. Meekness (Greek: "prautes")
    This word is translated "mildness" or "humility". It is used by Jesus on the Sermon on the Mount in Matt. 5:5: "Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth." Meekness is an inner grace of the soul and the exercises of it is chiefly towards God. It is that temper of spirit to accept God's dealings with us as good and therefore without disputing or resisting (according to the Vines Dictionary of Bible Words) In other words, meekness is not on display for people to marvel at. This humility is directed to God. It always keeps God in the proper place in your life. In the face of adversity or satanic attack, you rise up with diving strength and thwart all devises of the enemy with merciless disdain. But in the presence of God you bow low in recognition of Who He is in your life.

    So meekness is not the absence of backbone in your life. You are not called to lie down and roll over whenever it pleases the enemy. No, a truly humble heart knows when to bow and when to rise.

    9. Self Control (Greek: "egkrateia")
    This word is translated temperance and its root means "to be strong in a thing". A person with self control is "one who masters his desires and passions." (Thayer's Lexicon) So often self control is viewed in the negative; keeping restraint in the face of temptations, evil emotions, etc. Such a view is only a partial definition. Temperance also describes your ability to apply the numerous gifts and powers of God in your life at the right moment, in the right way and according to God's will not your own. According to Vines "the various powers bestowed by God upon man are capable of abuse; the right use demands the controlling power of the will under the operation of the Spirit of God."

    This 9-fold fruit of the Holy Spirit is amazingly important in the life of the Believer. We simply cannot ignore it. We need an abundant supply in our lives so we can be true