The Holy Spirit

MEMORY VERSE: “If we live in the spirit, let us walk in the spirit.” —Galatians 5:25

JOHN 16:12-15; ROMANS 8:26,27; GALATIANS 5:16-26

THIS week’s lesson shows the importance of walking in the spirit that we might bring forth the fruits of the spirit, thereby avoiding the flesh and its death-dealing fruits. For, even as the apostle admonishes (Gal. 5:17), “the flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other.”

Both kinds of fruit, that is, the fruit of the flesh and the fruit of the spirit, are enumerated for our consideration in this fifth chapter to the Galatian brethren. The fleshly fruits include “fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousies, wraths, factions, divisions, parties [margin, ‘heresies’], envyings, drunkenness, revellings.” The fruit of the Spirit, on the other hand, is “love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self control.”—Gal. 5:19-21,22-23, ASV

It seems essential, then, that those who wish to grow as in Christian Growth, Christians give attention to the manifestations of Christ likeness and therefore put away those things which would injure them as new creatures; for the works of the condemned flesh can lead only to death, whereas the works of the spirit will lead to life, and that on the highest plane of existence, if we are faithful. There is no greater hope than the one which is before us at the present time of harvest in the closing years of the Gospel Age.

The development of a greater measure of love is the first fruit mentioned by the apostle in this passage, and it seems evident that its characteristic is the principal thing in the life of the new creature—the sum, so to speak, of all of the other fruits. This thought is suggested by Paul in his letter to the Corinthian brethren (I Cor. 13:1-13), where he points out the many ingredients that are included in “love.”

He says that love suffers long, which indicates patience, and that it is kind. He further states that love is not envious, but is generous toward the well-being of others; and that it is not puffed up, but manifests itself in the nature of humility. Love does not behave itself unseemly, but is always courteous in its conduct; neither does it seek its own in a selfish manner. It is not easily provoked to anger or fits of bad temper; and it does not display itself by thinking evil things about others. And, the apostle explains, love, which is the end product of all other graces of the Holy Spirit, is sincere, because it does not rejoice in iniquity but rejoices in the truth.

If we have given our hearts to the Lord in full consecration and are striving to the best of our ability to do his will and are living according to the spirit which comes from above, we should, according to the admonition of our memory text, “also walk in the spirit.”

The use of the word walk in this passage is important, because it suggests activity or progress in the development of the new creature. It takes effort to walk, but we are promised that we will receive strength throughout our Christian walk if we stay close to our dear Lord and Savior. Those who sit do so in darkness, and will, consequently, not be prepared for the glory, honor, and immortality that has been promised to those who will make satisfactory growth as new creatures in Christ Jesus.

As we become more and more filled with the Holy Spirit, however, we will realize a controlling influence in our lives. That influence is divine power, which will assist us in raising ourselves above the fallen state of darkness and inactivity to a new spiritual state on a much higher plane and service to our Lord. “For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.”—Eph. 3:14-19

Dawn Bible Students Association
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