By Pastor Brendan Kirby
We want to encourage our people that God wants us to bear fruit (John 12: 24), fruit that will remain, and that we will reap a harvest if we do not give up! We need to realize that we must continue to sow good seeds – sowing to the Spirit – if we want to reap an eternal reward. If we sow to the flesh we will forfeit our good efforts. We need to warn one another that sowing to the flesh will result in corruption and ultimately death. God is faithful, He will bring us through our time of testing, and we will reap a harvest, amen! Hallelujah!
Gal 6: 7 – 10
7 “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.
8 For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.
9 And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.”
1. SOW THE RIGHT SEEDS:
Gal 6: 7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked, whatever we sow, that we shall also reap.
Be born again and born of the Spirit:
John 3: 3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Gal 5: 16 – 18
16 I say then: walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
Don’t Sow to our “Selfish nature”:
Gal 5: 19, 21
19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness,
20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies,
21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
BUT Sow to the “Unselfish nature”:
Gal 5: 22-25
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
Develop Good Soil In Which To Plant Good Seeds:
In order to produce a rich harvest in our lives we also need to consider the soil that we are planting our seeds into. As discussed in Mark 4 and Matthew 13, Jesus talks about various conditions of soil: hard, rocky, thorny or good. (There would be graduations of quality between these soil types.)
The Lord wants us to also cultivate good soil in our heart – removing the hard hearted attitudes (irrigation to soften the land); the shallow areas where we lack character (eg. looking at less corruption in magazines or watching it on the TV); the thorns and weeds of bad habits; and to put in some good fertiliser (eg. listening to christian preaching and music tapes, and reading good books) and to break up and plough the ground ready for the seed of the Word of God. That way, when we hear the word of God, we can be responsive, obedient and act in faith based on that word.
Onto our soil then, we can apply the ‘sunlight’ of the truth of God’s word (it’s the truth that sets us free, John 8: 32), in combination with the ‘water’ of the Spirit to enable us to do what the Lord desires! And so, we can bear fruit with endurance.
Fruit Of Our Lips:
One very important aspect of bearing fruit, is the quality of words that we speak. Jesus said that the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart (Matt 12: 34).
So our words are our “heart monitor”:
Heb 13: 15 … the sacrifice of praise to God, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name.
Prov 12: 14 A man will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth, …
Prov 13: 2 A man shall eat well by the fruit of his mouth, …
2. IN ORDER TO BEAR FRUIT:
Be baptized with the Holy Spirit:
Acts 2: 38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
2 Pet 1: 5 – 8 “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Have A Change In Heart:
FRUIT OF THE FLESH ⇒ FRUIT OF SPIRIT
Selfish ⇒ GENEROUS
Cold hearted ⇒LOVING
Angry ⇒ PATIENT
Anxious ⇒ PEACEFUL
Stressful ⇒ JOYFUL
Harsh and Cruel ⇒ GOOD-HEARTED
Insensitive ⇒ KIND
Tough & hurtful ⇒ GENTLE
Give up easily ⇒ FAITHFUL
Lack of discipline ⇒ SELF-CONTROL
God’s ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55: 8). God’s heart is completely unselfish (we cannot imagine Someone who is completely unselfish!), He desires to express His character by being considerate of others and to reveal His great love.
Growing in the fruit of the Spirit is how we can develop and share in God’s character working through our own lives! He is loving, He is peaceful, He is joyful, He is kind, He is patient, He is long-suffering, He is good, He is faithful to His word, and He is self-controlled. The fruit of the Spirit in our own lives, shows others how we are becoming more like our heavenly Father, a divine imprint in our lives.
The Lord passionately desires to bless us and to help us to be fruitful. But we need to walk in His ways (practicing to walk by faith, in obedience, love and other fruit of the Spirit), and not our own ways (walking according to our own desires). If we can learn to walk in the Spirit; to sow seeds by doing the right things with the correct motives, then we will reap a harvest, amen! But if we sow seeds to our selfish nature, we will not be spiritually strong, and will not be blessed very much.
The Fruit Of The Spirit Is A Result Of:
- Be filled with the Spirit (Acts 2: 4, 38; Eph 5: 18)
- Be led by the Spirit (Rom 8: 14 and Gal 5: 18)
- Be spiritually minded (Romans 8: 6)
- To live according to the Spirit (Romans 8: 5 and Gal 5: 25)
- By the Spirit, put to death the deeds of the body (Rom 8: 13)
- To walk in the Spirit (Rom 8: 4; Gal 5: 16) and you will not stumble in the flesh
- Phil 1: 6 He is faithful to complete the good work He has begun in you.
- Psalm 138: 8 The Lord will accomplish that which concerns me.
- Phil 3:15 If in anything you have a different attitude He will reveal this to you.
- Phil 2:13 It is God at work in you to will and to do according to His good pleasure.
- Psalm 32: 8 He will guide you with His eye.
- 2 Tim 2: 7 The Lord will give you understanding in all things.
- Psalm 139: 1, 23, 24 O Lord, You have searched me and known me … try me and know my anxieties, and see if there is any wicked way in me.