Who are the children of God and how do we recognize them? We are known as the children of God as the fruit of the Spirit is expressed in us.
“For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” — Galatians 3:26*
“In this the children of God are manifest…: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.” — I John 3:10*
“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” — Matthew 5:9*
*emphasis added throughout
These are all passages in the Bible specifically referencing fruits of the Spirit, the very fruits we must bring forth to be known as the children of God. This is the full list as recorded in Galatians:
These are the signs that the Spirit of God lives within us and the traits that point others to Christ as we live them.
Last month, we talked about love, joy, and peace. This month, I’d like to talk about the next three fruits of the Spirit.
“But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” — James 1:4
We must have patience for Christ to finish His works in us, and it is a necessary ingredient in our growth in our walk with God.
In the Parable of the Sower, the Lord tells us that those who hear His word and do it will bring forth fruit. But this fruit will not come forth on its own.
“But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.” — Luke 8:15
Throughout the New Testament we are admonished to hold our hope of perfection with patience, and it is in our patience that we will receive the crown of life at last.
This word in the Greek contains the concept of goodness, kindness, and gentleness. It is a kindness of service, goodness that is done for others, to meet their needs and show them the love of God’s Spirit within us.
“Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.” — James 1:27
“If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,’ but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit?… But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” — James 2:15-16, 18
“But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you…” — Matthew 5:44
This goodness is the inherent goodness that comes from God and is intrinsic to our natures. As we walk with God, we are to grow to be like Him. We are to truly become good and righteous.
“(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)” — Ephesians 5:9
This is to be the result of our growth in Christ, from grace to grace.
“…for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light…” — Ephesians 5:8
— Megan Payne