Paul Continues His Letter to the Galatians (Part 2)
October 31 - Nº 304 Galatians 3:23 – 6:18
In the first half of his letter to the churches in Galatia, Paul explained that the only way anyone can become a child of God is through faith in what Jesus did on the cross. When he died, he paid the penalty for all our sin! No longer is anyone required to make sacrifices, be circumcised, or obey the Laws that were given to Moses. Paul insisted that this is true for everyone regardless of whether they are Jews or Gentiles, slaves or free, males or females. However, Paul wanted to be certain that the new believers in Galatia understood that this freedom from Old Testament Laws did not give them freedom to live sinful lives. Their faith should be evident in the way they served and loved each other. “As a matter of fact,” Paul insisted, “you are actually keeping the entire Law if you obey this one commandment: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Paul warned these new believers that this was impossible to do on their own. He explained that It was only through the power and grace of the Holy Spirit that they could love each other properly and keep from sinning. If they allowed the Holy Spirit to lead them, they would no longer be slaves to their own desires that led to immoral behaviors such as jealousy, anger, selfishness, envy, cliques, etc. In place of these desires, the Holy Spirit wanted to fill their lives with nourishing “fruit” that would attract others to Jesus. Paul listed nine “fruits” that should be evident in the lives of true believers:
Love: Paul used the Greek word agape. He was describing love that was based on choice rather than emotion. Spirit-filled believers serve other people regardless of what these people can offer in return.
Joy: Spirit-filled believers are able to praise God in every situation. This leads to delight rather than despair during difficult times.
Peace: Spirit-filled believers have quietness in their souls instead of anxiety. They can rest calmly in God’s love.
Patience: Spirit-filled believers are able to wait for God and wait on others without getting upset or pushy.
Kindness: Spirit-filled believers show compassion. They are happy to help others who have needs because they have experienced God’s grace.
Integrity: Spirit-filled believers are trustworthy and honest in every situation.
Reliability: Spirit-filled believers are faithful to God and loyal to others.
Gentleness: Spirit-filled believers do not become demanding or act superior when they are helping or correcting others.
Self-control: Spirit-filled believers do not allow their own desires to get in the way of pleasing God or loving others.
Paul wanted the new believers in Galatia to enjoy every freedom and blessing that God makes available to His children.
Is there evidence that the Holy Spirit is in your life? Is He producing the fruit that attracts and nourishes others? Choose a fruit that should be more evident in your life. Then pray and ask the Holy Spirit to produce it and make it visible.