The Biblical Focus of a Disciple Part 2: What is spiritual fruit?
What is spiritual fruit?
Before we look at the focus of the passage, I want to answer the question, “What is spiritual fruit?” Spiritual fruit can be broken into the following categories: personal thinking changes, personal character changes, and personal action changes. Romans 12:2 says that we are to be “transformed by the renewing of our minds…” this transformation of the entire person is spiritual fruit. Galatians 5:22-23 says that, “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance.” Both passages emphasize different aspects of spiritual fruit, one being a thinking change, while the other is a character change. II Corinthians 3:18 says that we are, “changed into the same image [the image of Christ] from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” Once again, the spiritual fruit mentioned in this passage is a character change of the entire person. In John 15, Jesus mentions loving the brethren, answered prayer, and joy as spiritual fruits produced by God in the lives of believers. The church of Ephesus in Revelation 2 was commended as a church that was tenacious, active in service, discerning, and doctrinally and practically pure. These marks of spiritual maturity are forms of spiritual fruit. The church of Philippi was commended by God as a giving church. This was spiritual fruit. The church of Thessalonica was commended for being thorough in their spread of the Gospel throughout their province. This thorough proclamation of the Gospel was an example of spiritual fruit. We can see that spiritual fruit involves spiritual practice, thinking, and character changes.