The Marks of God’s People

by Jeffrey W. Hamilton

Text: Matthew 7:15-20


I.         By their fruits you shall know them - Matthew 7:15-20

            A.        You can distinguish between the righteous and the unrighteous by their fruits

            B.        The things that they do make them recognizable. More importantly, the results of their work stand out.

            C.        We could talk about the characteristics of the wicked, but today, let’s focus on the marks of God’s people

II.        Christians have righteous characteristics

            A.        The fruit of the Lord’s light is goodness, righteousness, truth - Ephesians 5:8-9

            B.        Galatians 5:22-25 - the product of the Spirit

                        1.         Love - A devoted love. A love that gives even when it is not returned.

                                    a.         Defined in I Corinthians 13:1-8

                        2.         Joy - Happiness or a calm delight

                        3.         Peace - A quietness that comes from harmony with God and man.

                                    a.         It is the opposite of war.

                        4.         Patience - Longsuffering. The willingness to endure.

                                    a.         It is shown toward us by God giving us many opportunities to turn from sin.

                                    b.         It is needed by us to deal with the shortcomings of our fellow men.

                        5.         Kindness - A gentle person who is kind and good

                        6.         Goodness - A generous person who is good.

                                    a.         It is the opposite of evil.

                        7.         Faithfulness - A person of conviction who has his faith, trust, and confidence in God.

                                    a.         It also refers to a person who is reliable and trustworthy.

                        8.         Gentleness - A gentle, humble person.

                                    a.         He is the opposite of a hot-tempered man.

                        9.         Self-control - A person able to control his desires

            C.        Those who have peace, produce righteousness by spreading peace - James 3:17-18

            D.        A fear of God distinguishes us - Malachi 3:16-18

                        1.         Psalms 111:10 - It is the beginning of the wisdom mentioned in James

                        2.         It is a source of strength of character and fountain of life - Proverbs 14:26-27

            E.        But Malachi 3:16 also tells of another characteristic - speaking often to each other

                        1.         The reason for gather as we do today is so we can encourage each other - Hebrews 10:25

                        2.         The reason we sing in worship is to teach and admonish each other - Colossians 3:16

            F.        Christians are courageous - Psalms 46

                        1.         The source of our courage is our Lord

                        2.         We can withstand the blasts. We can wait on our Lord - Psalms 27:14

            G.        We produce fruit when we meditate on God’s word - Psalms 1:1-3

            H.        Everyone will see we are Jesus’ disciples by our love for each other - John 13:34-35

                        1.         Two things that manifest us as belonging to God - righteousness and love - I John 3:10

                        2.         Our love for each other shows whether we love God - I John 4:20

            I.         We are different - I Peter 4:3-4

                        1.         People often do not understand us - Acts 26:24

                        2.         Jesus was treated no differently - John 10:20-21

III.       If we do not produce results, we will be removed - Luke 13:6-9

            A.        Fruit is not for the young and vigorous. We can be productive even in our old age - Psalms 92:13-15

            B.        Are you fruitful? Are you productive? Do you bear the marks of a Christian?

The Fruit of the Spirit

Match the fruit of the Spirit to the definitions below.

  • A gentle, humble person
  • Devoted even when it is not returned
  • A gentle, kind person
  • A trustworthy person of conviction
  • Calm delight
  • A person in control of his desires
  • Willing to endure
  • A generous, good person
  • Quiet harmony with God and man
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