Steadfast Servants – Part One

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22, 23

Jesus said, “He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much….” He then added one of His most pointed comments: “No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon” (Luke 16: 10 & 13).

Members of the U.S. Marine Corps have as their motto that which is becoming of all of us. Their motto: “Semper Fe,” means “always faithful.”

Having trained together and sharing a mutual goal, they bond themselves to the corps and one another with a pledge to always be faithful.

Do you approach your calling as a Christian with less commitment? Are you perpetually making excuses for yourself? Do you allow yourself liberties our Lord never intended?

In Galatians 5: 23, “faithfulness” is listed among the fruit of the Spirit. That is, in the Spirit filled believer’s life one characteristic is faithfulness. The Greek word translated faithfulness is PISTIS, meaning “the character of one who can be relied on.”  It means we are obedient to God and loyal to our associates. That is the fruit of the Spirit.

The text does not say fruits, plural, but fruit. These are not nine separate virtues we are to seek to develop. They constitute one body of excellence that are the natural product of the Spirit-filled life.  They are not some things we do, they are what we are to be.

Let’s recapitulate as we consider this seventh characteristic of the nine aspects of the fruit of the Spirit. 

The first three have to do with our UPWARD relationship with God: love, joy, and peace.

The next three are OUTWARD on a horizontal plane, and have to do with our relationships with people: longsuffering, kindness, and goodness.

The final three have to do with our INNER being: faithfulness, meekness, and self-control.

P.T. Forsyth, a giant of a theologian of a past era said, “Unless there is within us that which is above us, we shall soon yield to that which is about us.”

Our faithfulness is founded on God’s faithfulness to us which stimulates our faith in Him.  When we have faith in Him we desire to be faithful to Him.

The core reason we find so little faithfulness today is not that we are too passionate about bad things, but that we are not passionate enough about good things. To be faithful to a person or position we must be passionately committed to it. Such commitment comes from the belief that God can be trusted with the things that matter most.

Faithfulness to God is not like building a house where there are no storms; rather it means building a house that no storm can destroy.

Resolve to Semper Fe.