Our Bible verse for today: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Galatians 5:22-23 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Don’t live a lie.”
Not everyone who professes to be a Christian really is one. Hitler professed to be a Christian but he obviously was not. Likewise, in the movie “The Godfather – Part III” Michael Corleone is a ruthless crime boss who oversees a mafia operation of gambling, prostitution, loan sharking, extortion, and murder. In one scene we see him in church lighting candles, kneeling in prayer, and receiving a blessing from his priest. While he is doing that his henchmen are out in town beating, torturing, and murdering people on his instructions.
Not everyone who professes to be a Christian is a Christian.
Also, there are many people who have made a genuine profession of faith in Christ at one time, but who are now out wandering in the spiritual wilderness. They have drifted far from the practice of the faith and are now instead involved in adultery, drugs, alcohol, petty crimes, and more.
Not everyone who professes to be a Christian is a Christian, and not everyone who professes to be a Christian is a faithful Christian. All of those people are living a lie.
In Matthew 7:13-23, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught a lesson about those who are faking the faith. In that passage He used as His examples false prophets who claim to have a word from God but don’t, and regular people who claim to follow Jesus but who are not living according to Biblical principles. In His lesson He told His listeners that you will know such people by their fruit. In other words, you will see the evidence of what is real by how they live their lives.
In Galatians 5:22-23 Paul described for us what it looks like when a follower of Christ is living in the fullness of the Spirit. That person’s life will be characterized by love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. That’s the fruit we need to see in the lives of other people, and in our own lives. If that fruit is not there, there is something wrong with the faith we profess to be ours.
Don’t live a lie. If you profess to be a follower of Christ then it’s essential to live in a way that honors Him.