The Fruit of the Spirit

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23

When we walk in the Spirit, its fruit is visible to all. The opposite case occurs when we walk in the flesh. Not in vain did the Lord say that by their fruits you will know them. In the case of the fruit of the Spirit, all will know that we walk in the Spirit when love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness and self-control are visible in us. Certainly, taking into account the pressures of the world, only walking in the Spirit can see such fruit.

It is fitting that we look, in all its context, at what Paul wrote in Galatians concerning the fruit of the Spirit. Paul emphasized the abysmal differences between walking in the Spirit and being guided by the flesh. Galatians 5:16-18 says, I say then, walk by the Spirit and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is against the Spirit, and the Spirit desires what is against the flesh; these are opposed to each other, so that you don’t do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

Paul then enumerates the works, that is, the fruits of the flesh. Galatians 5:19-21 gives a list of the works of the flesh, Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. I tell you about these things in advance—as I told you before—that those who practice such things will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

When Paul says that there are also things like these that are works of the flesh, it means that the list goes on. The most striking of the contrast between the two lists is the following, Paul says in verse 19: Now the works of the flesh are obvious; while in verse 22 it says: But the fruit of the Spirit is. Nothing in the Bible is written by chance and everything is important. They are two lists that present several things each one; but one of them has the verb in the plural and the other in the singular. There are works or fruits of the flesh, but only a fruit of the Spirit.

What does all this mean? He who walks in the flesh does not necessarily practice each and every one of the works of the flesh. Simply carry out only one of them to walk on the flesh. It is probable that someone says, I do not walk in the flesh because I am not homicidal, nor drunk, I am very faithful to my partner and I cannot stand the sexual deviations. But if your religious beliefs attach more to traditions of men than to the Bible, you walk in heresies, which are works of the flesh and not of the Spirit.

In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit, being one, all its components must be present so that we can say that we walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh. That means that one should not miss one of the list: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness and self-control. They are nine elements, all are important and none should be missing. How difficult it is to achieve it! Of course it is when we do it in our forces. But remember that this is the fruit of the Spirit, therefore, it is only possible to achieve it when we are truly guided by the Spirit and not by our own being. God bless you.

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