Scott Nichols

Read: Galatians 5:22-24

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace . . . (v. 22)

Apples grow on the branches of a tree that is well rooted in soil. Water from the ground sustains the tree’s leaves, which convert light energy into sugars that help pollinated blossoms grow into juicy pieces of fruit. The character traits we bear as Christians are described by Paul as fruit. These dispositions are not the cause of our salvation but the outgrowth of it. The roots are grace and through that root system the Spirit channels the sap of Jesus so that we can be spiritually productive.

Unlike the gifts of the Spirit, the fruit of the Spirit are to be common to all. We each have different gifts—some preach well, others are skilled at hospitality, still others have the gift of teaching, and so on. We don’t all have the same gifts. But we do all have the same fruit. You cannot say, “I think I am called to the fruit of goodness but not to the fruit of self-control.” No, this is a packaged set.

Taken together, these fruit add up to Christlikeness. This is what Jesus exuded throughout his earthly ministry. What’s more, since Jesus once told the disciples, “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:5), we know that these fruit point directly to the renewal of God’s image in each one of us. We were created in God’s image. Now the fruit of the Spirit reconnect us to that deepest truth about ourselves. —Scott Hoezee

Prayer: By your Spirit, grow in us the fruit that gives life, Lord.