40 Days of PEACE

Dr Jim Brown's TruNorth Devotional
40 Days of PEACE
Day 20 | FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT |  Galatians 5:22-23
FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT

 Galatians 5:22-23
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”
ESV

Just before Paul talks about the “fruit of the Spirit” here in these verses, he talks about the “works of the flesh.”  I appreciate that God’s FRUIT of the Spirit can always conquer the works of the flesh.

Comparing the two, works are WORKS, but fruit is FRUIT.  Fruit also isn’t achieved by working but by abiding by the vine or tree.  Fruit is attractive, it nourishes, it is fragile, and it tastes good!
Paul also doesn’t say the “fruits of the Spirit” but only the singular… “fruit” of the Spirit.  So what’s the difference?

Well, unlike the GIFTS of the Spirit – of which the Spirit distributes each as He wills – here, the Holy Spirit seems to distribute them ALL.  Thus, if you have the FRUIT of the Spirit, you have ALL those qualities listed as fruit. Therefore, it would appear that instead of one Believer having “love” and another “self-control” and another “peace,” we ALL have them ALL in the Holy Spirit.

Thus – and in keeping with our 40 days of peace – the fruit of PEACE means peace with God, with other people, and it is a positive characteristic, not simply the absence of stress or fighting.
When God talks about “the peace of God which passes all understanding” (Phil 4:7), it is a higher level of peace than simply when everything is calm and settled.

The Greek word for peace is “Eirene” which means: “not just freedom from trouble but everything that makes for a man’s highest good. The tranquility of the heart, which comes from trusting God completely.”

Two prevalent names in the early church were “Chara” (Joy) and “Irene” (Peace).

Prayer: LORD, thank you for the FRUIT of the Spirit – all of them.  I receive them gratefully and acknowledge that You have provided them for my benefit AND the benefit of those around me. Amen.
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