What Exactly is the Spirit-filled Life # 3

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As we close out this series on the Holy Spirit we will look at the last three ingredients of the fullness of the Holy Spirit. We have considered love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, and goodness.

We must possess all nine of the ingredients of the Holy Spirit to be Spirit-filled. Let us look at the last three elements.

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Now We Come to Faith

". . . according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith." (Romans 12:3)

James Strong gives us this definition of faith: “persuasion, that is, credence; moral conviction (of religious truth, or the truthfulness of God or a religious teacher), especially reliance upon Christ for salvation; abstractly constancy in such profession; by extension the system of religious (Gospel) truthitself: - assurance, belief, believe, faith, fidelity.”

True Spirit-filled faith is more than that. Yes, we must be persuaded, and have moral conviction. Faith is all about assurance, and believing, but it is so much more. Faith simply is knowing. Spirit led faith is not based on belief alone, but rather on the belief in the facts. Everyone has beliefs. Not everyone knows the facts.

I recall a day when my wife and I took a trip to an amusement park in New Jersey. Leaving from Philadelphia we took I-295 N to the park. We enjoyed the day, and finally it was time to head home. We left the park and hopped back on I-295. The one hour trip turned into two hours – then three. Something was wrong. I knew we were in trouble when we passed the sign that read, Welcome to New York. It did not take me long to realize that even though we were still on I-295, we were also still heading north when we should have been heading south. I sincerely believed we were traveling in the right direction, but I was sincerity lost. I believed, but I did not know.

So it is with many today in the area of religion. Truth never changes. There are over 2,000 different religions today, but only one Truth. Faith is knowing the Truth. Faith is knowing the Narrow Way, Jesus Christ. James 2:19 says this – “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” Satan and his demons believe. Just believing is not enough. Your faith must be grounded on the right foundation – the foundation of Jesus Christ.

It is possible to know His mind through His Word. He wants us to know Him intimately, not superficially. As we know Christ’s mind, we can then respond accordingly in faith as we watch the things hoped for come into evidence (Hebrews 11:1).

We read again in Hebrews 11:6, “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” It is impossible to please God without faith, but again faith is knowing. We need to know how to please God. We need to understand His workings in our lives, but how?

Philippians 2:5 tells us, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:” By yielding our mind to Christ, He will replace our thoughts with His thoughts. We are told in II Corinthians 10:5 to cast “. . . down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”

This can only be done when the Holy Spirit of God is given permission to control our minds. It must be a conscious, on purpose decision. If the Holy Spirit is allowed to reign He will guide us into all truth – “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come” (John 16:13). Let Him be your teacher.

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Meekness

Meekness – if we are to be Spirit-filled, we must be meek. James Strong defines meekness as humility, among other things. The Free Dictionary describes the word meek as “Showing patience and humility; gentle . . . submissive:”

Meekness is closely related to the fifth ingredient of the Spirit, gentleness. It would seem that gentleness deals more with actions. Meekness seems to be more concerned with our attitude. Gentleness stems from our meekness. If we do not have a spirit of meekness, we will never be able to display gentleness.

It is the hidden man of the heart whom God honors, “But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price” (I Peter 3:4). The hidden man, the inner man is what God looks at. We are told in I Samuel 16:7, “. . . for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”

Your gentle actions are born in a meek, and quiet spirit. Compare a meek, and quiet spirit to the works of the flesh in Galatians 5:19-21. Meekness can not be found in any of the works of the flesh. Meekness is contrary to the flesh in all ways. Psalm 147:6 reveals this thought about meekness, “The LORD lifteth up the meek: he casteth the wicked down to the ground.” The LORD seems to make a direct comparison between meekness and wickedness. How much better to be included as the meek rather than the wicked?

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Temperance

To truly be filled with the Spirit we must add temperance to love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, and meekness. Temperance simply means self-control. As a Spirit-filled Christian we need to be moderate, using self-restraint in both our behavior and expression.

Mind control is necessary to have self-control. Proverbs 23:7 tells us, “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he . . . .” We are told in Romans 12:2 to transform our minds – “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Why must our minds be transformed? Because our minds are naturally at enmity with God, and His purpose for our lives.

Transformation takes place by renewal. Our minds must be renewed. Our intellect must be made new. In the above verse the word conformed means to be fashioned like. Transformed means to be changed, and renewing means to be renovated. When we think of home renovation, we think of home improvement. Renovation is a positive word. We fix up. We redo. We change the home for the better. Likewise, our minds need to be renovated; need to be fixed up, and redone. A change must take place for the better.

In the flesh, it is impossible to have self-control. The flesh craves control. Jesus Himself says in Matthew 26:41, “. . . the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” We can only have self-control through the Spirit, just as all the other ingredients of the Spirit-filled life must come from God.

Every act of self-control begins in the mind. God does not differentiate between intent and action. That is why He says in Matthew 5:28, ”…whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” If the mind is not controlled, it will not be long until the body will be out of control.

Matthew 5:43 continues, “Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.” Both love and hate are decided in the mind first. James furthers this thought in James 1:14, 20 “But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. . . For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.” Man’s natural will does not perform God’s righteousness, Again, compare temperance with the works of the flesh (Galatians 5:19,-21).

If you are to have a bumper crop of Spirit-fruit, you must include all nine ingredients. To live a Spirit-filled life, you must possess the Spirit’s love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. When you walk and live in the Spirit, The face of God is near.

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Comments 12 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

And when you walk and live the spirit, others can tell. :) Have a great weekend my friend.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Thanks for coming in to visit, Bill. Have a great weekend as well. This is a special weekend for me as it was 34 years ago today that I married a most marvelous woman - and she still is! Thanks again for making the trip.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean

Excellent teaching on the fruit of the Spirit. Thanks for the reminder to allow to Spirit to nurture these nine ingredients in our lives. Sometimes my fruit need watering. I like the assurance in your very last sentence. Thanks!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi MsDora,

We all need to water and nurture the ingredients. But at the same time we can have goals to work toward. Patience is my tough one! Thanks for checking in.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

Beautiful finish Bill and soaked in truth. How will we ever make it in these last days without the Spirit of God inside? Up and shared everywhere I have to share.

Hope you had a very Happy Anniversary!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Thank you, Jackie. I know I couldn't make it without the Holy Spirit. I'm Glad God sent him to us. Thanks for the share as well. The anniversary was great! Thanks for asking!


suzettenaples profile image

suzettenaples 2 years ago from Taos, NM

Beautiful and inspirational. To be filled with the Holy Spirit is a wonderous thing.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi Suzette,

Yes, it is absolutely a wonderful thing. Glad you were able to stop by and be a part of the conversation!


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 2 years ago from Southern Minnesota

Great wisdom concerning these fruits Bill, I gained much from the insight from your explanation of meekness focusing more on attitude and gentleness on the behavior and how the two are in concert with one another.

A very useful and helpful series!


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Hi Tammy,

Glad you got something out of it. I've been extra conscious of my fruit bearing lately. I guess that's where this series comes from. Thanks for taking the time to read and consider it. Hope all is well in Southern Minnesota.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

On my prayers across the waters hub the last commenter said she wanted to join..thought maybe you would want to contact her or let her know what to do...

will share again.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA Author

Okay, Thanks Jackie.

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