FRUIT BEFORE GIFTS
Have you ever met a Christian,-Pastor or not who preaches, teaches, speaks in tongues, works miracles e.t.c but have questionable character traits, but you keep getting blown away by the gifts of the spirit they manifest on a daily basis?
And the church can so emphasize the gifts of the spirit these days!
If you’ve not, lucky you. You see, I have. So many times. And I’ve found myself excusing the questionable behavior in my mind saying: ‘Who am I to judge a man/woman of God? God decided to use them so they cannot be that bad.
Then recently God started to remind me and show me that in his books, its fruit before gifts. It does not matter how many gifts of the spirit you operate in, if you are not manifesting the fruit of the spirit, you are on your way to hell.
The Message Bible puts it this way and I could not have said it better:
15-20 “Be wary of false preachers who smile a lot, dripping with practiced sincerity. Chances are they are out to rip you off some way or other. Don’t be impressed with charisma; look for character. Who preachers are is the main thing, not what they say. A genuine leader will never exploit your emotions or your pocketbook. These diseased trees with their bad apples are going to be chopped down and burned.
21-23 “Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached the Message, we bashed the demons, our God-sponsored projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat. All you did was use me to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit. You’re out of here.’
What I realized s this when God gives gifts, they are gifts-he does not take them back because we misbehave. 
So where does this leave us? The fact that you are manifesting the gifts does not make you heaven bound. You could be speaking in tongues and on your way to hell.
By the way, that person I described above could easily be me or you. So while manifesting the gifts, I’ve learnt to focus more on the real deal-the fruit.
Galatians 5:22 gives me a full list. A look at that list reminds me again that I need God.
I am so not there yet.
Lesson Learnt: The gifts are useless without the fruit. What’s the use of the gift if I use them and end in hell?
Let’s focus on the real deal. Cultivate the fruit before the gifts so help me God. Amen!
Who’s with me?