Please read Galatians 5:17-25 to learn what the fruit of the Spirit is.
Why is fruit used to describe these attributes?
Luke 6:43-45. In the Bible a tree is a common symbol of a person’s life. Trees produce fruit and because of this they were a valuable commodity to farmers in the ancient world. When the tree did not provide fruit, it would be useless to the owner. Consider Mark 11:12-14. The tree was useless because it showed no fruit. It was no good.
The fruit of the Spirit refers to us as being the tree and our qualities as fruit. Do we blossom love? Do we grow peace? When the farmer comes will he see a return on his investment or rather does he see just leaves?
Fruit of the Spirit
Spiritual fruit belongs to the Spirit. This is something that God supernaturally creates through Christians’ lives. In order to fully produce fruit we have to have the indwelling Holy Spirit. While it is possible for non-Christians to love and experience joy, they don’t fully understand love (1 John 4:10) or know the true joy of having an inheritance in heaven.
Fruit, not fruits
Please note the singular tense of fruit. Each part of the fruit is not independent, but rather interdependent. The fruit all rely on each other. How can one have peace without knowing love? How could you have joy in an eternal inheritance and the coming of Christ without patience to wait for God’s plan?
All these traits are what the Spirit imparts to a Christian. There should be no such thing as an unfaithful Christian or an uncontrolled Christian.
Look at John 15:1-17. In this teaching Christ focuses on a vine and its fruit. Notice in John 15:3, Christ says we are clean because of the word that He has spoken. What truth we have in that passage alone. Thank God for His word and the power it holds (Romans 10:17).
Next, in John 15:5 we see that all fruit in a Christian’s life is produced when we walk with Christ. A Christian living for the world will have diminished fruit.
Bearing much fruit
In John 15:8 we have a couple of teachings. First, the “Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit.” A Christian who bears fruit is a joy to God, and not only that but it is God seeing Christ’s work as a worthwhile sacrifice. Christ did not die so we can go to heaven only, He died so we can have eternal life the second we come to Him.
Believers should bear fruit
Lastly, from John 15:8, “so prove to be my disciples,” a Christian should exhibit the fruit of the Spirit. If there is no fruit it is plain there is no salvation. We need to be careful about judging others and the work of God in their lives. Our salvation is not based on ourselves. Yet if we truly do have the indwelling Holy Spirit, should we not have the same Spirit’s fruit?
This is understandably a controversial statement, and one that has caused much debate and hostility, yet it is truth. We read it in the Word plainly, as seen above. The fruit of the Spirit is very much a part of sanctification and of such the process and display of fruit will be different for each believer.
Rather than letting this be a point of contention, why not use this truth to stir each other unto love and good works (Hebrews 10:24). After all, is not the goal of sanctification and the fruit of the Spirit to conform us to the image of Christ?