The Fruit of the Spirit - Patience, Kindness, and Goodness

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law

Galatians 5:22-23

This is the third segment in our study of the Fruit of the Spirit as we find it listed in Galatians 5:22-23.  We will be looking at the second set of three fruits, namely patience, kindness, and goodness. These three fruit are linked together, first, by their association in Paul's list, and second, by their mutual link to Kindness. Patience is restraint, while Kindness is restraint plus Goodness.

4. Patience is the ability to restrain one's anger, retaliation, and revenge in the face of provocation, thus it is being slow to anger and long suffering. The experience of patience begins with God's patience with me which is then to be extended toward others. The practice of patience encompasses not only my actions but especially my words and attitudes. It forbids being critical, judging others before its time, grumbling, gossiping, whining, and complaining. It is the result of the Holy Spirit's strengthening, and it is motivated both by our hope in the Lord and its ensuing joy. Further, it is associated with love, forbearance, forgiveness, perseverance, and thankfulness toward those who provoke and offend us. The proper response of those receiving patience is repentance.

Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil, being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains. 8 You too be patient; strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is near. 9 Do not complain, brethren, against one another, so that you yourselves may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing right at the door. 10 As an example, brethren, of suffering and patience, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 11 We count those blessed who endured. You have heard of the endurance of Job and have seen the outcome of the Lord's dealings, that the Lord is full of compassion and [is] merciful.

James 5:7-11

...strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light. 13 For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Col. 1:11-14

(See Rom. 2:4-5; 9:22; 2 Cor. 6:6; Eph. 4:2; Col. 1:11; 3:12; 1 Thess. 5:14-15; Jas. 5:7-11; 1 Tim. 1:16; 2 Tim. 3:10; 4:2; 1 Pet. 3:9, 15; Heb. 6:12.)

5. Kindness is directly associated with patience or long-suffering. Patience is basically restraint, while kindness is restraint and more. Kindness is not simply the absence of retaliation, but its definitional accent is on its positive action. It is a gesture which not only restrains arrogance, harshness, pain, or evil, but positively it seeks only good for the other which is extended humbly, in sweetness, softness, gentleness, usefulness, and graciousness. It is the positive gentle work of the Holy Spirit moving God's kindness through our souls then extending that kindness to others through us. It is supremely displayed in God's saving acts in Christ which are motivated by His love, mercy, and grace. Thus, kindness is motivated by love and is an expression of goodness.

Love is patient, love is kind [and] is not jealous; love does not brag [and] is not arrogant...

1 Corinthian 13:4

"For My yoke is easy [kind] and My burden is light."

Matthew 11:30

...if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.

1 Peter 2:3

(See Mt. 11:30; Lk. 6:35; 1 Cor. 13:4; 2 Cor. 6:6; Rom. 2:4; 3:12; 11:22; Gal. 5:22; Eph. 2:7; 4:32; Col. 3:12; Titus 3:4; 1 Pet. 2:3.)

6. Goodness is a heartfelt, moral quality of desiring and being of benefit to others according to God's will. It is a moral quality because goodness can have no part in any kind of evil. Thus, its motivations and actions must be morally pure. Goodness must be good. Kindness is a category and demonstration of goodness. It is goodness without any harshness only gentleness, while goodness itself is the larger quality and behavior and encompasses both the ability to be soft and kind (kindness), as well as, the ability to be tough, stern, and firm when good calls for it. For example, we see Christ's goodness in His sternness when cleansing the temple and denouncing of scribes and Pharisees because God's good purpose was best served by confronting these evils. The moral nature of God which revealed in His moral law defines the standard of goodness.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to [His] purpose.

Romans 8:28

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Romans 12:2

I have sent him [Onesimus] back to you in person, that is, [sending] my very heart, 13 whom I wished to keep with me, so that on your behalf he might minister to me in my imprisonment for the gospel; 14 but without your consent I did not want to do anything, so that your goodness would not be, in effect, by compulsion but of your own free will. 15 For perhaps he was for this reason separated [from you] for a while, that you would have him back forever, 16 no longer as a slave, but more than a slave, a beloved brother, especially to me, but how much more to you, both in the flesh and in the Lord.

Philemon 12-16

To this end also we pray for you always, that our God will count you worthy of your calling, and fulfill every desire for goodness and the work of faith with power, 12 so that the name of our Lord Jesus will be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and [the] Lord Jesus Christ

2 Thessalonians 1:11-12

(See Mt. 7:15-20; Mk. 10:18; Jn. 5:29; Rom. 2:10; 8:28; 12:2, 9, 21; 13:3; 15: 14; Gal. 6:10; Eph. 2:10; 4:28; 5:9; 6:8; 1 Thess. 5:15; 2 Thess. 1:11; Phile. 14; 1 Pet. 11, 13; 3 Jn. 11.)

The Fruit of the Spirit - Faithfulness, Gentleness...
The Fruit of the Spirit - Love, Joy, Peace

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Monday, 10 December 2018

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