“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
Have you ever noticed what hangs above all the doors of Baker Chapel in the Rogers Spiritual Life Center? There are plaques above the doors with the following nine words: LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITHFULNESS, GENTLENESS, and SELF-CONTROL. You may recognize these words as descriptions of the fruit of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit, who is present in the life of every Christian beginning at conversion, develops His fruit in our lives as we surrender ourselves to Him.
Paul writes about the fruit of the Spirit in his letter to the Galatians as he emphasizes how Christ-followers can “keep in step with the Spirit” (Gal. 5:13-26). He describes the conflict between the desires and acts of our flesh and contrasts these with the fruit the Holy Spirit produces in the lives of Christians who choose to follow the Spirit’s leading.
The theme for our Chapel services this fall is “Steppin’ In/Steppin’ Out: How to Walk by the Spirit.” This semester, we will focus on how walking by the Spirit involves both an “inner” and “outer” dimension. We must first “step in” to the nine facets of the fruit of the Spirit by understanding what the Bible teaches about each of them, and then we must “step out” by practically living out each one. Developing this rhythm of inner comprehension and outer working in our lives will equip us to walk by the Spirit.