Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal (1 Corinthians 13:1, KJV)
There are two important dimensions of our Christian life: daily Christian living and service. The fruit of the Spirit has to do with our day-to-day living, while the gifts of the Spirit have to do with our service. The Apostle Paul puts the fruit and the gifts in perspective in the verse above. He says if I speak in tongues, angelic or human( gifts of the Spirit) and do not love( fruit), I have become a sounding brass or tinkling cymbals, that is, an instrument that is just making noise!
The Apostle is not saying gifts of the Spirit are unimportant. He puts them in perspective to show us that character is more important in God’s sight than “working for Him.” The epitome of Christian character is love. The Father places our walk of love above all manifestations of the gifts of the Spirit.
If a minister demonstrates the gifts for the Spirit, such as the prophetic or even healing and does not love the people, to God, that minister is like a cymbal that is making empty noise. That is what the verse above is saying. The rest of 1 Corinthians 13 tells us what love is. It is essentially the way you relate to other people that enriches, lifts them up, or blesses their lives. Love is patient and kind towards others. Love bears the weakness of others. Love will not bring down others or seek their hurt.
In summary, when we walk in love, people around us become better when they meet us. What is the effect of your life on your neighbor? It will give you a clue as to whether you are walking in love or not. Make the walk of love your ultimate goal.
What are the fruit of the Spirit mentioned in Gal. 5: 22-23? How does your character compare with this list? Each time I check it out myself, I realize I have a lot of work to do! What about you?
APPLY THE WORD
Walk in love. Be mindful of the impact of your life on others. Your life should be like water that makes those who are around you to flourish like a palm tree!
Ask the Spirit to help you grow in your walk of love
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