“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God." [Galatians 5:16-21]
Walk by the Spirit
Notice two words in this passage: deeds and fruit. Operating from the part of us not connected to Christ, we do deeds. Our deeds may be religious, but in the end, they will stink. Fruit, however, arrives a different way. You can’t “do” fruit; you can only grow fruit. For fruit to grow, it must be connected to the tree. Without roots, there is no fruit.
But how is this fruit produced? Is it by man’s effort? Not at all. It is produced as Christians live in communion with the Lord. As they gaze upon the Savior in loving devotion, and obey Him in daily life, the Holy Spirit works a wonderful miracle. He transforms them into the likeness of Christ. They become like Him by beholding Him.
Many frustrated people will go around trying to do deeds of love, joy, peace, patience, and so on. But this is not how fruit is grown. Fruit is grown by our connection to the Spirit of Christ.
We walk by the Spirit when we invite him in. And whenever something gets in the way, we need to keep inviting the Spirit in. When we lack love, joy, peace, or patience, we need the Spirit. God’s Holy Spirit transform will transform our lives.
The Fruit of the Spirit
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” [Galatians 5:22-24]