“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control against such things there is no law.” (Gal. 5:22-23)
As Paul has done throughout this letter he polarizes the results of living in and out of Christ. The law promotes one kind of life, life in the flesh while Christ promotes a different kind of life, life in the Spirit. Each kind of life produces a certain kind of fruit. We have looked at the fruit of the flesh and now we see the fruit of the Spirit. They are the exact opposite of each other. The nature of the law was that it could not justify but the nature of grace was that it could justify. So one produces none justifiable behavior and the other produces justifiable behavior.
While the law brought death which is embodied in the works of the flesh, grace brought life which is embodied in the works of the Spirit. These works of the Spirit are so life-producing positives that there can be no law condemning them. As in the case of the works of the flesh we will not go over each of these fruits of the Spirit. They are self-explanatory and easily understood.
What is the lesson then in this group of verses? It is to continue to compare the losses and gains of living under the law or under grace. Living within the realm of flesh or living the life of the Spirit of God. The foolish Galatians had been fooled into thinking that they could live under both at the same time. They had been taught by the Judaizers that they needed works of the law, in order to truly be God’s children. Paul is saying that’s not so and it just brings about works of the flesh. If they wanted the fruits of the Spirit then they would have to choose grace, faith, and love instead of the law.
Task for Today: I don’t have to ask you which lifestyle you prefer. If I did you wouldn’t be reading this blog. The discussion that’s needed here is whether or not you will act upon your choice. Will you stop relying on self and works of the self and instead rely only on the work of Christ? Will you give up you and let it be God? That’s the task for today. Crucify the flesh, allow the Spirit in. He will change your fruit.