Friday, June 29, 2012

The Fruit of the Holy Spirit

Now, I don't want to be misleading. Although the nine gifts of the Spirit are how God Himself bares witness of Himself, we can tell that the Holy Spirit is present in people through a far simpler way. One can be deceived by a person who is pretending to speak in tongues, a false prophet or a person who is lying about experiencing a miracle of healing. Jesus warns of this in Matthew 7:15-20 and implies there is a far simpler way to tell when the Holy Spirit is present in a person. He says:
15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
Here Jesus says a good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit... Therefore by their fruit you will know them. A person who is saved and truly has the Holy Spirit bears the fruit of the Spirit. Their character is molded and shaped by the Holy Spirit who is living inside of them.

What are the fruits of the Spirt? Galatians 5:22-23 states:
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. 
When, you see people who "bear these fruits", even if they are not delivering the bound, healing the sick, speaking in tongues and prophesying you can theorize that the Holy Spirit is present in that person.

Likewise, how do you know that the Holy Spirit is in you? You bear the fruit of the Spirit. Love, peace, joy begin to manifest themselves in and through you. You don't have to try to have peace. Peace abides on its own. You do not have to try to have self-control. Self-control manifests itself when necessary. Some of you might be able to witness to the fact  that when you spend time in the presence of God or when you read the Bible (which is described as the sword of the Spirit) these gifts abide in you almost effortlessly. Yet when you are away from the Word of God or you don't spend time with God or you're not engaging in the actions categorize people as "saved", it is much harder for gentleness and patience or joy and peace to effortlessly abide through you. (But, if you are not baring the fruits of the Holy Spirit that does not mean you are not saved anymore. As described in the blog post about Stirring Up the Spirit, it just means the Holy Spirit is lying dormant inside of you.)

No comments:

Post a Comment