Monday, January 20, 2014

Fruits of The Spirit vs. Works of The Flesh

The Bible says in Galatians 5:22-23.
 "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law."

The moment you gave your life to God, He planted seeds within your Christian life, seeds that grow and are nurtured with the Daily Bread and Living Waters. Through your walk with God, the proof of your spiritual growth is in the fruits you produce. It is by these fruits that we will recognize our brothers and sisters in Christ, and by those same fruits or the lack there of that we will know false prophets and those who wish to lead astray.

The Bible says in Matthew 7:15-20 (ESV):

"Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits."
 If someone claims to be a Christian, but does not bear the fruits of the Spirit...  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control... then we know they do not belong to Him (Romans 8:9). They may appear to be following Jesus, but without these fruits it is clear that they are walking in the flesh rather than the Spirit of Christ.

By this same standard, we are also given an opposing view with which to judge actions... the works of the flesh. The Bible says in Galations 5:19-21...

"Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God."
With knowledge and discernment you will recognize them by their fruits and this is vitally important. Far too many people know verses of the Bible, but not the heart of God. They pick and choose which Bible verses support their personal opinions, values and morals, but do nothing to seek the Will of God. They instead have chosen to create for themselves an idol, a God which suits their needs and allows them to live comfortably just as they are, but being a Christian is not about personal comfort. Far from it. Jesus calls us to take up our crosses and follow Him. By taking up our cross, we are daily crucifying our fleshly desires, our works of the flesh along side Jesus and we too die to the flesh. Christianity is not a call to comfort, it is a call to change. We cannot follow Jesus and walk in the flesh, we cannot continue in our sinful nature and expect God to be satisfied with our lukewarm faith. God knows our hearts. If our profession of faith is not evident in our daily living it is clear we are not walking in the Spirit of Christ. In doing so we are not only fooling ourselves and others, but we've gone so far as to attempt to fool God Himself.

"Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows." -Galatians 6:7
 If you are sowing works of the flesh, that is precisely what you will reap. However, sow the seeds of the Spirit and you will reap the fruits thereof... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

May God draw you ever closer to Himself, fill you with a fiery passion to follow Him and a deep unquenchable hunger to know Him, to truly know Him.

God Bless,

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