Posts belonging to Category Fruit of the Spirit

Understanding God’s Word Series

Understanding God's Word

I’m excited to announce a new series of books that will be appearing over the next months. Each book in the Understanding God’s Word series is adapted from actual sermons preached in the local church. These books are part commentary, part exposition, but mostly offer a clear explanation of the text, showing how it relates to other Scripture and to our lives today.

This style of preaching is modeled after Nehemiah 8 where the Levites under Ezra “read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people could understand what was being read” (Neh. 8:8). These books are ideal resources for teachers preparing lessons, for pastors preparing messages and for personal Bible study.


Currently available:

Habakkuk: The Journey from Doubt to Faith

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Upcoming in 2023:
The Fruit of the Spirit: Growing More Like Jesus (September 2023)
Name Above All Names (Isaiah 9:6) – An Advent Series (October 2023)
Lord, Make My Life Count (November 2023)

Upcoming in 2024:
Note: Titles for 2024 will be added soon.

The Fruit of the Spirit and 1 Corinthians 13

Fruit of the Spirit

There is a reason love comes first in the list of the fruit of the Spirit. Love is not only the greatest commandment and the most important thing of all, but it contains all the other fruit as well.

We see this in Paul’s beautiful description of love in 1 Corinthians 13. Paul writes: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)

Here is a chart showing how each of the fruit of the Spirit correspond with Paul’s various descriptions of love here in 1 Corinthians 13:

Love = the whole description in verses 4-7
Joy = “Love rejoices with the truth.” (v. 6)
Peace = “Love does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.” (v. 4)
Patience = “Love is patient.” (v. 4)
Kindness = “Love is kind.” (v. 4)
Goodness = “Love does not delight in evil.” (v. 6)
Faithfulness = “Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” (v. 7)
Gentleness = “Love is not rude, … it keeps no record of wrongs.” (v. 5)
Self-control = “Love is not self-seeking; it is not easily angered.” (v. 5)

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control – they are all there in 1 Corinthians 13 because they are all part of the first fruit of love.

I also like how the preacher Donald Barnhouse describes each of the fruit of the Spirit as all springing from the one fruit of love. He writes:

Love is the key.
Joy is love singing.
Peace is love resting.
Patience is love enduring.
Kindness is love’s touch.
Goodness is love’s character.
Faithfulness is love’s habit.
Gentleness is love’s self-forgetfulness.
Self-control is love holding the reins.

Love comes first because love is the greatest commandment. Love is the greatest thing of all. Love is the first fruit which contains all the others.

From the message series: The Fruit of the Spirit: Growing More Like Jesus

Related message: The Fruit of Love