Walk By The Spirit 2
Chan Gin Kai
As Christians, we talk a lot about God the Father, and Jesus the Son, but we do not understand or talk enough about the Spirit. So what kind of relationship should we have with the Spirit? The Bible instructs us to walk by the Spirit.
To walk by the Spirit, there are things we need to walk away from, and things we need to walk with.
Walk With The Fruit Of The Spirit
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23)
The fruit of the Spirit are qualities that the Spirit produces in us, not results that we can achieve through our own goodness. It comes from desiring transformation in our life and accepting the Spirit’s work in us.
Do we eagerly desire growth or do we fear change? Do we humbly surrender our life to the Spirit or are there parts of us we are afraid to lose?
As the Spirit produces fruit in us, we need to embrace these attributes and exercise them. Like ‘spiritual muscles’ we become more familiar with regular use, and they grow as we exercise them. We put aside lust for love, chaos for peace and anxiety for patience. The bad that has always weighed us down is replaced by the good that the Spirit refreshes us with.
But in our dark and misguided world, the fruit of the Spirit is often dismissed while bad qualities are saluted. We are labelled prudes for exercising self-control while a deceptive form of freedom is celebrated. Gentleness is laughed as sissy while aggressiveness is cheered as strength. Kindness is treated as weakness while intolerance becomes the norm.
Let us not be deceived by the definitions of the world or treasure what the world values. We must not let the world erode what the Spirit has produced in us.
To walk by the Spirit, we need to walk with the fruit of the Spirit.
Walk With Christ
Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (Galatians 5:24-25)
Disciples of Christ are imitators of Christ. We follow what he has done. Just as Jesus was physically crucified, we put to death our sinful desires. We need to choose Christ over corruption. The problem is, we think decadence is delightful when it’s decay.
We want to walk with Jesus, but the road he has chosen is narrow and tough. It is fraught with obstacles and the path less travelled. Jesus never promised that our walk with him is going to be easy. But our only options are the strenuous stairway to heaven or the easy highway to hell.
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. (Matthew 7:13-14)
We want to walk with Jesus, but how do we keep up with his pace? Jesus is perfect and we are not. He has set such faultless standards that are impossible for us to attain. But there’s never a competition with Jesus. He is not trying to race ahead of us, and we’re not trying to beat a record. It is a journey with Jesus. He is beside us as we scale imposing mountains and track through treacherous valleys. He will guide us when we’re lost, and hold our hands when we stumble.
To walk by the Spirit, we need to walk with Jesus.
Walk With Love For One Another
Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other. (Galatians 5:26)
We need to grow in our relationship with each other, and not let pride come between us. Conceit has a way of tearing relationships apart. Paul warned early in the chapter about our need to be humble to each other too.
You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other. (Galatians 5:13-15)
Society has taught us to compute and compete, and we often bring them too far. We want to gain and we love to win. Relationships become transactional as we weigh what we can get from the other. Friendships get strained when we try to outdo each other.
Paul taught that we ought to “serve one another humbly in love.” We should look at building each other up by bringing ourselves down. Jesus washed his disciples feet, and he would have washed ours if we were there too. He set an example by humbling himself to us. He took on the “very nature of a servant” and “humbled himself by becoming obedient to death” (Philippians 2:3-8).
Jesus died for our sins and built the church, his family. We are his brothers and sisters, and the children of God. The relationship we have with each other is a bond forged through his blood. Our church is a family we need to treasure. Like all families, we may have our ups and downs and disputes sometimes. But when we constantly remember the love that Jesus has poured out for all of us, we will learn to love each other too.
To walk by the Spirit, we need to walk with love towards one another.
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Chan Gin Kai
Gin Kai is a film producer who believes in the power of media to inspire positive changes. He has spearheaded disaster relief and capacity building projects in impoverished communities across Asia. In church, he serves as a mentor to young professionals in the EDGE Ministry. He describes himself as "just a sinner who wants to get right with God".