Grow • Devotion 5

Fruit of the Flesh
Pastor Josh Yates

“Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” Galatians 5:19-21

Today, we start a two-part devotional on the fruitiness of our lives. I do not know about you, but I love fruit. My favorite fruit is a pear. The sweetness and the texture are just amazing to me. As I write this, I am thinking about going to cut one up right now.

The interesting thing about fruit (and all things that we eat that are grown) is that each different fruit or vegetable is produced by a specific type of plant. Apples come from apple trees and oranges from orange trees. It would be insanity to look at an apple tree and expect to get pears from it!

Paul begins this section of his letter to the Galatians to talk about what fruit is being produced in their lives. He presents a list of works that people do that make it apparent that those works are from the flesh. It is a rough list.

He starts out his list with the works of sensuality. Sexual immorality here is the Greek word, porneia, which encompasses all kinds of sexual sin including adultery, fornication (sex before marriage), pornography, and more. The next two words encompass a desire to live in a sensual way continually.

Idolatry is placing anything above God. This can be even good things. Our family, job, hobbies, vacations, and finances are not necessarily bad things. However, when we place more of an importance upon them than we do on God, we have begun to worship them.

Sorcery is what it sounds like, using spells with the desire to get what you want. Palm reading, Ouija boards, dabbling in witchcraft, and even some of the seemingly harmless games we play fit into sorcery. The battle we wage is spiritual and we must remember that our enemy will use whatever he can to get us to focus on things other than God.

Paul then moves the list into a set of words that deal with our relationships with other people. We can be jealous of what others have, even envious. We can rage and rage about what someone did to us or to someone we love on social media. It is easy to try to get people on your side in an argument and the only outcome of that is dissension and division.

Finally, Paul addresses how people can party and let their hair down. I am not going to get into the wisdom of drinking alcohol today, but as Paul says, drunkenness is never okay. It is a loss of control and you do things you would never do when under the influence of drugs or alcohol. That leads to doing things with groups of people that you would never do those things with.

This is a rough list, and Paul does not pull punches. In verse 21, he warns, “Those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.” Those that practice these things do not have the Spirit living in them and they will not be in Heaven on judgment day.

It can be easy to look at this list and dismiss the big ones at the beginning and at the end. It can even be somewhat easy to dismiss the things in the middle. However, every single one of us has the possibility of falling into any of these if we are not diligent in seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.

Do you practice any of the things on this list? Be honest with yourself. If you do, ask God for forgiveness today. Ask Him to begin to mold you and shape you into the image of Jesus. Go to a trusted friend and ask them to help you overcome. Talk to your location pastor about how you can overcome this. You can even give me (Pastor Josh at Lake Orion) a call and I would be honored to help you.

Do you know Jesus? Have you given your life to him? God’s Word tells us in Romans 10:9, “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Believe that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died on the cross for your sin and He raised from the dead to bring you life and you will be saved, right where you are today! Call on the name of Jesus, ask for His forgiveness and you will be made clean. If you made that decision today, give me a call! I would love to rejoice with you.

You can overcome what sins you struggle with! We will talk about that next.

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