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Summary: Introduction to the ‘fruit of the Spirit’. (Powerpoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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SERMON OUTLINE:

The ‘fruit of the Spirit’ is a reflection of God’s character

The ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ is a command of God

The ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ is grouped in clusters of three

The ‘Fruit of the Spirit is love…'

SERMON BODY:

• Tonight we are starting a brand new series called ‘The Fruit of the Spirit’.

• Based on Galatians chapter 5 verse 22-23:

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law”

Question: How many ‘Fruits of the Spirit’ did I read?

Answer:

• People normally say nine but actually there is only one!

• Did you not notice that your Bible has ‘fruit’ singular not ‘fruits’ plural!

• In fact there is really only one fruit of the Spirit and that is ‘love’,

• All the other characteristics mentioned are the results of love.

• i.e. For if we love someone then we are joyful with them.

• i.e. For if we love someone then we are patient with them.

• i.e. For if we love someone then we are good towards them.

• i.e. And so on.

Ill:

• If you remember a fruit juice drink called Five Alive you’ll get the idea.

• It was one drink, made up of five different flavours.

• So it is with the fruit of the Spirit.

• There is one fruit, but there are nine flavours.

What we see in verses 22-23 is the ‘fruit of the Spirit’ from 9 aspects.

• ill: Diamond.

• It can be viewed at different angles and in different lights.

• Each turn of the hand reveals further beauty of this magnificent stone.

(1). The ‘fruit of the Spirit’ is a reflection of God’s character:

• After all there must be a connection between fruit and root.

• That is true in horticulture but also true in spiritual things.

• These aspects of the ‘fruit of the Spirit’ listed by Paul;

• Could just as easily be listed as characteristics of the nature of God.

• i.e. ‘Love’ – 1 John chapter 4 verse 16:

• “God is love”

• i.e. ‘Joy’ – Zephaniah chapter 3 verse 17:

• “He will rejoice over you”

• i.e. ‘Peace’ – Hebrews chapter 13 verse 20:

• “The God of peace”

• i.e. ‘Patience’ – 2 Peter chapter 3 verse 9:

• “He is patient with you”

• i.e. ‘Kindness’ – Ephesians chapter 2 verse 7:

• “His kindness to us”

• i.e. ‘Goodness’ – Psalm 27 verse 13:

• “I will see the goodness of the Lord”

• i.e. ‘Faithfulness’ – Lamentations chapter 3 verse 23:

• “Great is your faithfulness”

• i.e. ‘Meekness’ – Matthew chapter 11 verse 29:

• “I am gentle and humble”

• i.e. ‘Self-control’ – Luke chapter 1 verse 51:

• “He has shown strength” (related Greek word)

• These aspects of the ‘fruit of the Spirit’

• Could just as easily be listed as characteristics of the nature of God.

• But that might lead to a problem.

• We are fallible creatures and not perfect like Almighty God.

Ill:

• Story of a little boy who went down to his chicken hutch;

• When he saw how small the eggs were he was really disappointed.

• So he went up to his bedroom and returned with a shoebox;

• In the shoebox was lots of straw and an ostrich egg.

• The boy held the ostrich egg up to the chickens and said;

• “Take a good look at this and try harder!”

Humanly speaking:

• There is as much chance of us consistently displaying these characteristics;

• As a chicken laying ostrich eggs.

• But they are not called the characteristics of human effort of good intentions;

• They are called the ‘fruit of the Spirit’ and therefore they are not outside of our domain.

• Because EVERY Christian has the Holy Spirit resident in their lives!

• They can with his abiding produce this type of fruit.

Ill:

• Fruit comes out of life!

• A factory may package fruit in tins etc.

• But it cannot create it or grow it.

• Fruit must grow out of life.

And when we have life – that is when we are ‘born again’ i.e. converted:

• We are given the Holy Spirit;

• And we are expected to produce fruit.

• Quote: “God wants spiritual fruits no religious nuts”.

(2). The ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ is a command of God.

• As Christians we are expected to be fruity people;

• Just scan the New Testament and you will see that:

• i.e. ‘Love’ – Matthew chapter 22 verses 37-39:

• “Love the Lord; Love your neighbour”

• i.e. ‘Joy’ – Philippians chapter 4 verse 4:

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