But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Oh, what a grand thing human nature is when it is working smoothly! There is the will sitting supreme, informed from above, through channels and means, by all the grace of God which the Spirit supplies. There is conscience, its spiritual assessor, waiting and warning and testing with unerring accuracy. There is the inner circle of the intellect, presenting to it all that is good, noble, or useful. Memory, bringing in its treasures from the past. Imagination, bringing in ornament and beauty from the present, and even from the future. There is the body beneath, with its active slaves ceaselessly conveying materials through the senses. There are the passions and the emotions, with their hidden fires, all ministering to the great work which is going on within. And surely it is worth the effort to be all that is meant by spiritual, to set ourselves to work in the best way. And to this end it will be helpful to consider those virtues which the apostle tells us are the "fruit of the Spirit" — those fruits and productions which spring up within us out of the harmomous working of our being — working, that is, as God means it to work, with all its several parts acting according to the will of God concerning us. It may be that we have not as yet learnt to use the machine aright; perhaps we have shrunk from, it, and God drives us in upon ourselves by the admonition of adversity or the reproofs of conscience. Perhaps, it may be, there is a large piece of this world's grit sticking somewhere within which needs to come away. Perhaps there may be a sense that we are, after all, our own masters, instead of workers for God, which hinders our perfection. If so, let us try to think what we might be if all these parts of our being were "entire," if we were working smoothly for Him.
(W. C. E. Newbolt.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,