fruit of the spirit: the character of christ

Fruit of the Spirit equals to the character of Christ, and as a body of believers, we must emulate Him by applying these God-given traits to our own spiritual lives.

As we look at the sinless life of Jesus while He was here on earth, we know He was perfect and upright in all things. He demonstrated His humanness as well as His divineness and was faultless in everything He said or did. His character was completely pure and unstained as He walked the earth so many many years ago.

However, before He went up to heaven to be with God, He told His disciples that He was going away, and that the Holy Spirit would come in His place.

The disciples become disheartened upon hearing this, but Jesus puts their minds at ease while He explains His purpose for leaving and gives them further encouragement. John 16:7 tells us, "Nevertheless I tell you the truth, it is expedient that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you."        

Also, John 14:1-6 says, "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And wither I go ye know, and the way ye know. Thomas saith unto Him, 'Lord, we know not wither thou goest; and how can we know the way? ' Jesus saith unto him, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me."

After this, the Holy Spirit was to come and bring power and victory over the lives of the disciples and to the first church which was created, representing the body of Christ.

The holy spirit brings about the fruit of the spirit

As you grow in Christ, your will, character, and personality begin to develop and become more like His, and the Holy Spirit aids in this process through the Fruit of the Holy Spirit. Maybe you have noticed, since your new birth in Christ, that you don't think, talk, or behave in the ways you used to before being saved. It is because you are being changed from the inside out--into a new person.

I think this is one of the most majestic and unique miracles ever displayed by God. He can completely turn the worst sinner ever found, into a righteous person-a new creation, who is then fit for His kingdom!

This is how the bible explains it in:

  • Ephesians 2:1-10 says " And you hath He quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince and power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom we also all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy. for His great love, wherewith He loved us; Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;). And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."
  • 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 also says, " Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him."
  • Ezekiel 11:19-20 God said, " And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heat out of their flesh, and I will give them an heart of flesh: That they may walk in My statues, and keep Mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be My people, and I will be their God."
  • Colossians 3:9-10 says, "Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him." And also in:
  • 2 Corinthians 3:18 says, "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord." Lastly,
  • Colossians 1:10 says,"That ye might walk worth of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God."

The Fruit of the Spirit is characterized by remarkable traits it brings to the believer in Christ, creating the values and guidelines that mark his/her Christian faith. Some of these are difficult to live by, as I too have experienced. However, as you grow in your faith, the Holy Spirit will help to change your life, your heart, and your desires into those that please Him. Ultimately, the Holy Spirit helps transform you into a being who is just like Christ. This is an exciting truth about living the Christian life!

These passages of scripture give the characteristics of and instructs us on what the Fruit of the Spirit are and how we are to apply them to our lives: 

  • Galatians 5:22-23 says, "But the Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law."
  • 1 Peter 4:8 says, "And above all things have fervent charity (love) among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins."
  • 1 John 4:8 tells us, "He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:4 instructs us, "That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour.." 
  • Ephesians 4:1-3 says, "I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that you walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness, and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace."
  • Ephesians 5:9 says, "For the Fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth..."
  • Matthew 7:15,19, 20 warns us, "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."

As you go about your daily life, remember how Christ is changing you to be just like Him, and is doing it through the Holy Spirit's work in you. You are becoming fit for the Master's use now here on earth; and ultimately will become perfect on that most precious day in which you will see His face!

In closing, I go to one of the most helpful passages of scripture I have found to describe how possessing the Fruit of the Spirit can encourage us as we continue in our faith as believers in Christ, to march on toward His will and purpose in our lives, giving us a blessed hope for all eternity:

1 Peter 1:3-9 empowers us in saying: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you; Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom; though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls." Amen 

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