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The Fruit of the Spirit: Goodness

Goodness is both passive and active—a part of our redeemed natures and the good works we do.

Goodness costs. Personal privation is part of that cost. It takes a lot to be good and generous in a world where the majority move the other way and are apt to taunt good people by calling names such as “goody-goody” or accuse the good of trying to be “holier than the rest of us.” The selfless sharing required to help others goes beyond the money we may give. God will put His finger on our time, talents, interests, strength, energies, and capacities to enrich others’ lives. We will have to set aside our own self-interest in order to give to others. Only the presence of Christ can alter our characters enough to make such sacrifices a blessing instead of a trial. The presence of Christ remakes our entire characters—we are no longer the flesh-centered persons we used to be. Becoming spiritually centered is part of growing the fruit of the Spirit. Consequently, the goodness that begins to come out of us is not our own goodness, but God’s goodness—the natural outgrowth of the Spirit of God within us.


Image: Clem Onojeghuo

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Category: Spirit, Winter 2018

About the Author: James F. Linzey is the chief editor of the Modern English Version Bible translation. He has a BA degree in Biblical Studies from Southern California College, and an MDiv degree from Fuller Theological Seminary. He is the author of numerous articles and books, speaker, and recording artist.

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