“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23).
We come to the ninth characteristic listed for as a fruit of the Spirit: self-control.
A quick reminder:
- There are not nine fruits of the Spirit. The fruit in the Greek is singular
- These nine characteristics are not a complete nor a closed set of characteristics
- The idea is that qualities and virtues like these are what happens – are the fruit – of the Spirit of God alive in us
None of these qualities or virtues originate with us. They are the results of the Holy Spirit at work in us. We experience these things as recipients. God first loves us, gives us joy, peace, patience, kindness, etc., and having received God’s love and Spirit in such a way, we then become able to share those same qualities and virtues with others. These Spiritual qualities and virtues do not originate with us nor can they be generated by us. They are received qualities and virtues.
The word for the week is self-control. The Greek word for self-control is egkrateia. The word literally means mastery, self-control, self-mastery, self-restraint. Like all the other qualities, self-control can only be accomplished by the power of the Lord through the Holy Spirit. That is why it is a fruit of the Spirit.
This word only occurs four times in the New Testament.
I am looking forward to seeing what God has to teach us about self-control throughout this week. Blessings!