The Spirit's Fruits - Final Review - Galatians 5

Steve Viars April 16, 1991 Galatians 5:22-24

- tonight we're going to be reviewing our study of the fruit
  of the Spirit
- I realize that you may be here tonight and you start
  attending somewhere in the middle of this series
- I tried to design this review in such a way that it would
  helpful and challenging to you as well as those who have
  been here each night
- I've also tried to put this together in such a way as to
  not embarrass anyone
- this is not an exercise to see how much you or I don't know
- the purpose is to see how much we have learned and
  especially how effective we've been at applying these
  truths

I. Quiz

- I'd like you to begin by completing the review quiz
- the quiz has two parts, matching and fill in the blank
     (explain and go over one from each section)

- Go over quiz

- OK, we've reviewed the meanings of some of these aspects of
  the fruit of the Spirit and we've thought about some
  specific situations in which they might apply
- now let me ask you, have you taken definite steps of growth
  in these areas we've studied?

- In other words, are you a more fruitful person spiritually?
- Have you grown in love, joy, peace, longsuffering.
  kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, and self-
  control?

II. Testimonies

- I mentioned last week that I wanted to take some time
  tonight to hear from you regarding some specific situations
  or a specific example where either the Lord challenged you
  and helped you apply these truths to a specific situation
    - or a situation or example where you didn't apply these
      truths but were convicted and afterward made it right

- now, this is open to men and women of any age, and let me
  just say that I have two definite goals in mind here

    - we're not trying to toot our own horns, obviously

    - ours goals are:

      1) to thank and praise the Lord for the direction He
         gives us through His Word

      2) to help us become more skilled at applying this
         material by hearing real life situations where
         others applied it


  - I hope that helped us accomplish our goals of

      #1 - thanking and praising the Lord for His direction
            through His Word.

      #2 - helping us become more skilled at applying this
           material because we've heard about how others have
           applied it to specific situations.

- now I'd like to another exercise that will help us
  especially with that second goal

III. Identifying The Weeds And The Artificial Fruit

    - one of the things I'd like us to leave this study with
      is one or two components that we know we still need to
      work on and still need to emphasize when we think about
      growth

    - Now we've been trying to identify those by asking a
      series of "self-examining" kinds of questions each
      evening
    - I've also encouraged you to ask your spouse, co-
      workers, and friends, which of these areas you need to
      work on the most

    - However, I think we need to factor in here that
      God says our hearts are deceptive and desperately
      wicked

    - INPUT - what is the implication of that truth to our
        ability to identify which of these areas need to be
        changed?  (we may think we're doing OK on a given
        component when in fact its just an artificial
        substitute)

    - Because that’s true, I'd like us to take a few moments
      now to brainstorm weeds and artificial fruit that
      correspond to each fruit we've studied

    - INPUT - when we talk about weeds, what are we talking
        about?  (characteristics that are exactly opposite)

    - INPUT - when we talk about artificial fruit - what are
        we talking about?  (characteristics that appear to be
        similar to the real fruit on the outside, but is in
        fact on closer examination a worldly substitute - wax
        fruit)

    - Now here's the point - we're looking for things that
      need to change - and we're asking ourselves two
      questions:

        1) Are there any obvious weeds that need to be rooted
           out?

        2) Is there any artificial fruit that needs to be
           replaced?


Fruit               Weeds              Artificial Fruit

1. Love          Hate, apathy        conditional love,
                                   friendly, but only with
                                         friends

2. Joy         despair, sorrow    temporal joy, happiness
                                   for the wrong reasons

3. Peace      fear, anxiety, strife  numbness, carelessness,
                                       absence of conflict

4. Patience   impatience, short-fused    laziness,
                  worry                  insensitivity

5. Kindness     malice                nice, polite,
                                       manipulative

6. Goodness    wickedness, evil-doing   hypocrisy,
                                       misrepresentation

7. Faithfulness  infidelity, untrustworthy  intellectual
                   undependable             agreement, half-
                                            hearted, tacid
                                            acceptance
8. Meekness    arrogance, proud,      bashful, false modesty
              self-seeking, high-     given easy to tears,
               minded                   timidity

9. Self-control  irresponsible         monastic, self-
                                        deprivation


- Now I'd like each of us to take a look at that list of 18
  characteristics and say - which of those do I need to work
  on the most?

- If I asked my spouse, what would he/she say?
- If I asked a friend....co-worker....my child?

- With that thought in mind, let's talk specifically about
  what to do to maximize the potential to change in that
  area.

IV. Applying The Put-Off Put-On Principle

    - If I asked the question, what is the primary principle
      for growth and change in the NT, I think most here
      would be able to answer "the put off/put on principle.
    - that principle is found in some of the most important
      passages in the Bible about how a believer changes and
      grows like Eph. 4:22-24, Col. 3, etc.
    - we also know this concept as the principle of
      replacement

    - let me get your mind warmed up to this by asking "When
      is a liar no longer a liar?"
    - when is a thief no longer a thief?

    - What I'd like to do now is run a couple of these
      components through the put-off / put-on principle to
      see how it will specifically help us change
    - Let's start with the spirit's fruit of patience.
    - now, for each of these, we could talk about habits of
      thinking that need to be put of or put on, we could
      talk about habits of behavior

    - to try to keep that somewhat separate - let's start
      with
        - what are some possible habits of thinking that a
           person struggling with patience would need to put
           off?

              - (my time is more important than someone
                 else's, I must get all these tasks done
                 today, why can't this child eat without
                 making a mess-after all, she is 15 months
                 old)

        - what would these habits of thinking need to be
           replaced with?

        - what practical advice could you give to help
          someone trying to conquer these habits of thinking?


        - now let's try on of the artificial fruits - let's
           try timidity

        - habits of thinking that need to be put off?

        - habits of thinking that need to be put on?

        - habits of behaving that need to be put off?

        - habits of behaving that need to be put on?

- the goal is to have each of us take the time necessary to
   apply these principles to the area we need to change in
   the most so we're doing all we can to grow in this
   important area.

V. Our Hope of Change

    - v. 24-25 - We don't have to!

Steve Viars

B.S. - Bible, Baptist Bible College
M.Div. - Grace Theological Seminary
D.Min. - Westminster Theological Seminary

Pastor Steve Viars has served at Faith Church since 1987. He and his wife Kris were married in 1982 and have two married daughters, a son, and two grandchildren. Pastor Viars’ gifted teaching ministry, enthusiasm for the Word of God, and organizational skills are instrumental in equipping Faith Church. He oversees the staff, deacons, and all Faith ministries and serves on the boards of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors, Biblical Counseling Coalition, Vision of Hope, and the Faith Community Development Corporation.

Read Steve Viars’ Journey to Faith for the full account of how the Lord led Pastor Viars to Faith Church.

View Pastor Viars' Salvation Testimony Video