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Read Introduction to Galatians


“…gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law”


Against such

The word “such” indicates that this list of the fruits of the Spirit is representative of other fruits of the Spirit. This is not an exhaustive list. The Holy Spirit will do more for us than simply what this list indicates.

there is no law

God puts no ban on the fruits of the Spirit. There is no law forbidding the fruit of the Spirit because they fully discharge the demands of God’s character (the law). Obedience by our own bootstraps cannot fulfill the demands of the law. The law cannot prevail over the fruit of the Spirit because the fruit of the Spirit transcends the law. Paul says in effect, “So you want to merit God’s favor by obedience to the law? There is no law that prohibits the fruits of the Spirit and no law necessary to produce them. There is no obedience to produce the fruits of the Spirit. ”The fruit of the Spirit” does not require an act of Congress to gain God’s approval.

The fruit of the Spirit is the natural outflow of walking in the Spirit. No law makes a person love or forgives or give peace. A person walking in the Spirit does not need a law for anything but something that establishes standards. Living the Spirit-controlled life goes beyond anything the law can provide. The law attempts to keep sin in check but does not have the power to do so. The Holy Spirit can do what the law cannot do.


The power of the Holy Spirit can do what obedience to the law by operation bootstraps cannot do.


The purpose of the law is to bring sin under control, but in doing so, it provokes greater rebellion against God’s standards. Walking in the Spirit (5:16), on the other hand, wars against the flesh (5:17). This life goes against our natural tendencies.

The law cannot reach the scope of living by the Spirit filled life because spirituality goes far beyond morality. The government cannot pass legislation to control man’s sinful appetites to help him control his behavior. Even the law of God cannot legislate spirituality. On the other hand, a believer controlled by the Holy Spirit does not need a law to govern her life because she has the Holy Spirit’s dynamics living within her.

Motivation comes from within the Spirit filled believer. Christianity is not primarily a system of morality but a system of spirituality. Christian dynamics do not come from legislation, but life, the life of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit takes the life of Christ and makes them real in our lives (John 16:14).