The Fruit of the Spirit Is… Goodness

The Fruit of the Spirit Is… Goodness

“Are you a good person?” The answer to that question depends on a person’s perspective. On one hand, as Jesus says, “No one is good except God alone” (Luke 18:19). Emphasizing how all people are under sin, Paul says, “No one does good, not even one” (Romans 3:10). We all have sins and temptations that we struggle with. But on the other hand, as those who have been cleansed by the blood of Christ, we are to be people of goodness. According to Galatians 5:22-23, “goodness” is the sixth part of the fruit that we are empowered by the Holy Spirit to produce in our lives on a daily basis.

What does Scripture teach us about goodness? Goodness is something that should consume everything that we do. As Paul says, “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10). As Christians, we are to be “full of goodness” (Romans 15:14). We are to devote ourselves to good works (Titus 3:14), being rich in good works (1 Timothy 6:18). We should take advantage of every opportunity that we receive to do good for all people, even for those who hate us (Luke 6:27); as Paul says, “So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). Using the gifts and talents that we have received, we are to be “good stewards of God’s varied grace” (1 Peter 4:10).

Goodness should consume not only everything that we do but also everything that we are. Goodness is not just surface level. Scripture does not instruct us to only do good externally; the Bible commands us to be good internally. As Jesus says, “The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil” (Matthew 12:35). A person can only be good and bring forth good if they have a “good treasure.” True external goodness will only result from true internal goodness. If we want to live a life that is defined by goodness, we must begin by allowing the Holy Spirit to create and develop within us a good heart and mind. As we continue to grow and develop, good works and decisions will naturally follow.

If we are honest with ourselves, perhaps we find that we are not as good as we should be. Sometimes, when we think about doing good, we become burnt out and begin to step away from what’s right. Here is a challenge for us this week: “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9). Don’t give up on or grow tired of doing good. Keep pushing forward. If we can do that, when the right time comes, we will reap the abundant, eternal blessings associated with goodness. What a wonderful, marvelous day that will be.

-Tyler Alverson


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