So, as we live in, grow in, and mature in the Lord, we should begin to bear Holy Spirit fruit.
What is the Holy Spirit fruit we can hope to see in our life? Galatians 5:22 tells us some of what the Holy Spirit produces as fruit in our life: Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and control of self-focused flesh and pride. Just reading those words and thinking about living in those qualities is so satisfying and uplifting of the spirit in me. Imagine living in these fruits increasingly!
What a tremendous hope!
Remember from part 1 how these things grow? These things will grow inside me…. until I overflow. I plant and practice His Word and stay in fellowship with Him and His Holy Spirit and His fruit comes out of me. These things become who I am and flow out of me like a fountain of living water! The fruit is so wonderful and becomes so abundant that I cannot contain it! I do not create the fruit to make a good show or try hard in my own self will to produce it. I just stay connected to the vine and the vine furnishes the life sap to produce the Holy Spirit fruit! It is not just a pretense or good manners or impressive behavior….it is who I am flowing out of me….real and genuine!
John 7: 37-39, “Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believes on me, as the scripture has said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Spirit was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)”
This Holy Spirit fruit and living water comes from the inside, not the outside of me or by my own willpower. It is not dependent on my outside situation, but rather on my inside situation. I can have inner joy in the middle of outer trouble. I can have goodness when persecuted by evil. I can have patience inside when everything outside says to rush. I can control self-focus and self-will even when tempted by the flesh or pride. I can show kindness when someone is rude. I can be faithful when someone deserts me. I can forgive and remain in peace when attacked.
Paul is a great example of this. The book of Philippians was written while he was in prison, but it is full of joy! He says “rejoice”. That means to find joy again. He could have hope and consider the heavenly treasures he had in Yeshua Jesus which caused him to JOY AGAIN in Yeshua Jesus..he could go inside himself regardless of what was happening outside in the world! He was bearing the real internal fruit of joy through the Holy Spirit in Him. What a hope to hold fast onto! We can bear Holy Spirit fruit too! What a blessing and heavenly treasure! This is one way we overcome in Yeshua Jesus by His Holy Spirit! We overcome evil with good. He is our hope!
One more point about this “inside outside” reality. You can know the inside state of someone or something by looking at the outside fruit. God is the only one who really knows the heart for certain and only He judges the heart. But, He does tell us to know people and people groups by their fruit so that we can be safe in what we trust and with whom we fellowship. If we want to hope to grow and mature and bear Holy Spirit fruit, we must stay connected to Him, the Vine….and fellowship with Him and those fellowshipping, following, and connected to Him. We follow Truth in love. We speak truth in love.
Remember there are IFs in the promises and hopes. IF living with and in Yeshua consistently and continually by the Holy Spirit…..THEN our hope of bearing the fruit of the Holy Spirit can be realized in us and through us! What great hopes! What great heavenly treasures! The world cannot know or produce these precious Holy Spirit fruits in their whole depth of reality and truth. But, IF they see them in us and working through us, then they may begin to think about and desire the gospel, the good news of Yeshua Jesus that we preach.