Note:- These are the outline notes of the sermon Bearing the fruit in Spirit delivered at City Revival Ministries, Kuala Lumpur on 30/01/2016 7PM. You can contact me here for any clarifications, doubts or corrections. This is subject to change anytime and will be updated if needed. You may share this link to others. Praying that this will minister to you and may these notes be a blessing to many. In Christ, Donny
Bible Portion for Meditation
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.24 And 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. [Gal 5, NKJV]
Last week we meditated on Walking in Spirit. And we discussed on how to walk in the Spirit. If you do not walk in the Spirit, you will end up doing the works of the flesh. Now, let us go a little more deeper into walking in Spirit and how it brings forth the fruit of the Spirit.
Living in Spirit, Walking in Spirit
Everyone who is born again are transformed by the Holy Spirit into a new creation. Hence we are living in the Spirit. Each and every breath is from the Holy Spirit. First John 5:1 says, “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well.” Other references are found in 1 John 2:29; 3:9; 4:7; and 5:4, 18. Spiritual birth is an act of the Holy Spirit. He is invisible, yet whenever He moves, there are definite changes. Neither persuasive words nor intellectual agreements have the power to make someone “born of God.” Only the Holy Spirit can perform that transformation in a repentant heart (Mark 1:15; Acts 2:38).
So, the Holy Spirit, reminds us in Galatians,
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
Those who are living in the Spirit, needs to take the effort to walk according to the Spirit’s guidance.
If we fail to walk in the Spirit
If we do not obey the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we will end up fulfilling the deeds/works of the flesh.
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. [Gal 5, NKJV]
Therefore, a born again child of God is exposed to the above, since we are living in a sinful world. So, inorder to escape from committing the above, the only way is to trust in the Holy Spirit, and move as per His guidance
If we obey the Spirit
If we are living in the Spirit, we also need to walk according to the Spirit. If we walk according to the Spirit, then the result would be, that we will bear the fruit of the Spirit in our lives.
Jesus said, “A tree is known by its fruit”
43 “For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.44 For every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush. 45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart[a] brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. [Luke 6]
Also in Matthew,
33 “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, for the tree is known by its fruit. 34 You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35 The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil.
Therefore, a Spirit-led Christian is recognized by the fruit of the Spirit. If you claim to be Spirit-led, then your life should exhibit the fruit of the Spirit. Isn’t it logical?
Let me conclude the above portions into three simple sentence
- If we live in Spirit, we need to walk in Spirit
- If we walk in Spirit, we will bear the fruit of the Spirit
- If we fail to obey the Spirit, we will fulfill the lust of the flesh, which leads to the works of the flesh
Fruit of the Spirit
The portion from book of Galatians, lists out the fruit of the Spirit.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Note that the word ‘fruit’ mentioned here. It is used in a singular form, which means there is only one fruit of the Spirit, which is having 9 forms. Or in other words, we can say, this ‘fruit’ of the Spirit, has 9 ingredients. That implies, we need to bear the fruit having these 9 qualities, which makes it edible and pleasing to God.
What are those nine ingredients in the fruit of the Spirit? Let me copy the same portion from different translations, to get a better understanding of these nine elements.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit [the result of His presence within us] is love [unselfish concern for others], joy, [inner] peace, patience [not the ability to wait, but how we act while waiting], kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature together with its passions and appetites. 25 If we [claim to] live by the [Holy] Spirit, we must also walk by the Spirit [with personal integrity, godly character, and moral courage—our conduct empowered by the Holy Spirit]. 26 We must not become conceited, challenging orprovoking one another, envying one another.
The Message Translation
22-23 But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. 23-24 Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified. 25-26 Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.
New Living Translation
But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives
Long-suffering is love forbearing
Fruit when ripens to its best, we become like Christ
When all the forms of fruit are fully developed, it is as if Jesus by the Holy Spirit is incarnated in His disciples. Christ is revealed in us. This is our ultimate goal – to become like Christ, by following His footsteps.
11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. [Eph 5]
Also, in another portion
18 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. 19 For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. 20 For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. 21 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: 22 “Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”; 23 who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed. 25 For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
Practical Tips to bear fruit
Look at how a tree bears fruit. There are different stages. A seed needs to be planted. It needs to be nurtured with water, nutrients and proper growing condition. A sprout develops from the seed and grows into a stem and then into a tree. Root grows downwards and becomes strong to hold the tree. Then after so many days or months or years, it blossoms. Then it produces young fruit. The tree should withstand strong wind, rain, storm etc. In the process, the fruit matures into an edible fruit, which contains further seeds to produce the next generation.
See, how wonderful Holy Spirit has coined the term, fruit of the Spirit, to explain how we need to bear the nine elements in our Christian walk with God. It takes time, effort and energy. We need to be constantly filled with the Spirit, empowered with the Spirit and walk in the Spirit to bear the fruit of the Spirit.
Each time, when we are faced with life challenges, these are opportunities to mature our fruit and bear more result. But many Christians fail to recognize this and they pray to God to remove the challenges. We fail to recognize that these are God-given opportunities to nurture our fruit and to practice the nine elements.
All the great men/women of the Bible, passed through various TESTS, TRIALS and TEMPTATIONS to become more like Christ. Next time, when you face a challenge, will you seek the help of the Holy Spirit, to enable you to bear fruit? That is the true Spirit-led Christian life. Spirit-filled Christian life leads to a fruitful Christian life.
Example: When someone does wrong to you, you get angry. Immediately, you feel like responding to the person in a worldly way. But, give a pause, and listen to the Holy Spirit and take action. Holy Spirit would likely say, “My child, I have forgiven you, you also forgive him/her as Christ has forgiven you. I am there for you. Jesus also suffered. I will help you dear”. Immediately, you receive a greater strength to forgive them
Also Holy Spirit is likely to remind you
26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give place to the devil.
You will hear a sweet whisper of the Holy Spirit and He would help us forgive them. At that instant, our fruit matures one step more. Likewise, gradually we become more like Christ. This is a wonderful experience, to be led by the Spirit.
May God bless you and help all of us to practice this.