“But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things” (Galatians 5:22, 23 NLT). Jesus said in the Gospel of Matthew 7:20, “Therefore by their fruits you will know them” (NKJV). “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit” (Matthew 12:33 NKJV).
Paul lists the nine attributes of the Holy Spirit to the Galatians: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. If we all walk in the Spirit, the natural by-product will be these attributes which help us to all walk the same direction. That is true reconciliation.
First Corinthians 13:1–13 teaches us about love best. Interestingly, the apostle Paul was teaching on the gifts of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians 12, then paused to start teaching a whole chapter on love in chapter 13, then continued his teaching on Holy Spirit gifts in chapter 14. Paul simply points out the need to have love to operate in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Without love, Holy Spirit gifts of tongues become sounding brass. The gift of prophecy, word of knowledge, and faith that can move mountains are nothing without love. This is how important love is:
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing (1 Corinthians 13:1–3 NKJV).
Paul proceeds and defines love by teaching what love is and what it is not.
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things (1 Corinthians 13:4–7 NKJV).
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