Friday February 17
“In modern language the passage in Galatians 5:22, 23 could read something like this: ‘The Fruit of the Spirit is an affectionate, lovable disposition, a radiant spirit and a cheerful temper, a tranquil mind and a quiet manner, a forbearing patience in provoking circumstances and with trying people, a sympathetic insight and tactful helpfulness, generous judgment and a big-souled charity, loyalty and reliableness under all circumstances, humility that forgets self in the joy of others, in all things self-mastered and self-controlled, which is the final mark of perfecting. This is the kind of character that is the Fruit of the Spirit. Everything is in the word Fruit. It is not by striving, but by abiding; not by worrying, but by trusting; not of works, but of faith.’ “-S. Chadwick, in Arthur Walkington Pink, The Holy Spirit (Bellingham, Wash.: Logos Bible Software, n.d.), chapter 30.
“If the love of the truth is in your heart, you will talk of the truth. You will talk of the blessed hope that you have in Jesus. If you have love in your heart, you will seek to establish and build up your brother in the most holy faith. If a word is dropped that is detrimental to the character of your friend or brother, do not encourage this evil-speaking. It is the work of the enemy. Kindly remind the speaker that the Word of God forbids that kind of conversation.” – Ellen G. White, Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 76.
- In class, talk about the final question at the end of Thursday’s study regarding the need for self-control. Why, if we are saved by grace, is victory over sin so important? After all, isn’t the gospel about forgiveness of sin? At the same time, think of the character of Judas and what the sin of covetousness did to him. What can we learn from his example about the answer to the question about the need for victory? Also, how does what Ellen G. White says here help shed light on the question of the need for victory? “One wrong trait of character, one sinful desire cherished, will eventually neutralize all the power of the gospel.” – Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, p. 53.
- Why is the fruit of the Spirit more important than any gifts of the Spirit?
- Read aloud 1 Corinthians 13 in class and talk about what it means. Why does Paul put such a big emphasis on the need for love? How can we learn to love the way that Paul talks about showing love here? Why is death to self and abiding in Christ so crucial, especially in loving those whom we truly dislike?