What is the Fruit of the Spirit?
Galatians 5:22,23 states: "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law." [NOTE: The translators capitalized the letter "S" in the word "Spirit" because they thought it was referring to the Holy Spirit.]
In the greater context, Paul is dealing with the matter of the Judaizing teachers wanting to bind the law of Moses and circumcision upon the Gentile Christians as they sought to be justified by their own law of righteousness. Paul goes through a series of logical arguments throughout the letter to refute them and their false teaching. Some might ask, "If there is no more law, then do we have a license to sin in whatever way we please?" Paul then answers this possible concern by stating in the negative that we cannot walk in any way we please.
In the remote context of Galatians 5:13-26, Paul is dealing with this internal struggle with which Christians sometimes battle. Paul commands that we walk in the spirit. What is the "spirit" of this passage?
In Galatians 5:17, Paul states: "For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish." [NOTE: The translators capitalized the letter "S" in the word "Spirit" because they thought it was referring to the Holy Spirit.] It is most likely what Paul is referencing is the spiritual conflict that people face in their daily lives. There is the fleshly mindset (flesh) versus the spirit (or spiritual mindset) that Christians are to set their minds (Colossians 3:1-4).
This cannot be referring to the Holy Spirit because He is Divine and is not tempted by evil (James 1:13-15). A Christian will continue to face the struggle between a fleshly mindset and a spiritual mindset.
This is further shown by Galatians 6:1, which fits the spiritual mindset rather than the Holy Spirit because we must become a people who seek to be meek and gentle: "Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness (a part of the fruit of the spirit - Galatians 5:22,23), considering yourself lest you also be tempted."
We can be certain though that we must have a spiritual mindset that is continually guided by the Holy Spirit through His written revelation (2 Timothy 3:16,17).
It is the humble spirit or attitude or mind of Christ/Spirit we must all aspire to possess (Romans 12:2; Philippians 2:5-8).
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