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The Fruit of the Spirit: Love

God does not dispense the fruit of the Spirit apart from Himself.

God will not drop neat little virtue packages of the fruit into our lives. He never does. We are deluded if we think we can produce fruit with no effort and no time for development. The fruit comes only as a result of His increased presence in us. The more I have Christ, the more I have His love. The more I have God, the more I have His goodness. The more I have the Holy Spirit, the more I have the whole of His fruit in me.

The key to love, the fruit of the Spirit, is selflessness. This love is self-giving, self-sharing, self-sacrificing. It willingly gives up personal desires for the love of God and His people.

What is the most irresistible force upon the earth? Love!

God’s love is a powerful life principle. It is a divine dimension of living, a radical life style. What is the most irresistible force upon the earth? Love! What pulverizes strong prejudice and builds enduring allegiance? Love! What binds people together in indestructible devotion? Love! What is underneath all generous and magnanimous actions? Love! What is the source of strength for people who gladly serve and die for one another? Love! If this is true even of selfish mortal humans, how much more is it the very life of God! The love of God is the life of God poured out lavishly and constantly.

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Image: Keilidh Ewan

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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. His graduate education is a degree in religious studies from Fuller Theological Seminary. His undergraduate degree from Southern California College is a BA in Biblical Studies with an emphasis in religion. He is the author of numerous articles and books. He is a speaker, recording artist, State Chaplain for the California Military Officers’ Association, and retired Army chaplain. MilitaryBibleAssociation.com. Wikipedia.org/wiki/James_F._Linzey. Twitter: @JimLinzey

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