you met someone who blushes easily? I
remember one girl in particular who was this way. We were in college and we were being guys
(translation: neanderthals! J) and she ended up being
the only girl among three guys as we sat at a restaurant killing time. Although we were not saying anything inappropriate,
there was more than one occasion she blushed at what we said.
took a long time for me to realize why.
been alternating between the Psalm and the fruit of the Spirit for several
months now (Advent and Christmas changed our emphasis for a month). This is where we get the listing of the
“fruit of the spirit.”
writes in Galatians 5:22-23
the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such
things there is no law.”
is this “goodness” Paul writes about?
It’s the third description of the second group in this list of nine but
what does it mean? How do you know if
you’re “good” whenever Jesus Himself said, “only
One…is good” (Matthew 19:17)? At the same time we’re told good trees produce
good fruit (cf. Matthew 7:15-20).
Greek word translated “goodness” in Galatians 3:22 is only used four times in the New Testament and all
four times are in the Apostle Paul’s writings.
It’s the idea of benevolence and generosity towards someone else but it
also speaks of a moral and spiritual excellence in our lives. Because of the nuances of this Greek word,
it’s no accident it follows “kindness” in our list of the
fruit in a Christian’s life.
we hear someone speak of doing something “out
of the goodness of your heart.”
That’s getting towards the idea of this word. By describing a Christian’s life, the Apostle
is telling us we will be known by our inner morality. This isn’t merely something enforced by
society, pastors, or family. This inner
light is put in there by Christ and illuminates for the world to see.
friend of mine who led a Celebrate Recovery ministry says, “What’s in your heart will come out of your neck if it doesn’t come out
of your mouth.” Very true statement. The state of your heart will be evident in every
part of your life. Your morality—your
Spirit-guided compass—is present and active in your life regardless of
know the scary part? Those in your
social circle know if you’re filled with “goodness”. Let that sink in. It’s quite sobering. If you’re the one with all the juicy gossip, “goodness”
is not the word that comes to their mind.
If you’re the one knowing all the dirty jokes, “goodness” is not the
description coming to their mind about you.
when the Spirit is active in our lives, this internal moral uprightness is
present in our lives. This gal I knew in
college possessed this kind of heart.
She was very sensitive to the morality of our actions. The fruit of her life demonstrated the
goodness of her heart. As Christians, we
should all be this way. This is our
calling, blessing, and witness.