From “Discipleship and Discipline”, by Willliam H. Hicks, copyright, March, 2005:

“A disciple’s task is to glorify God the Father.  This is accomplished by bearing much fruit.  Earlier in John 15, the Lord identified Himself as the “true Vine”, illustrating the mechanics of how we bear fruit.  But to what fruit is He referring?  In Galatians 5: 22 – 23, the Apostle Paul says:  “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”  These elements of the fruit of the Spirit are all relational terms.  They describe how we move from the Word of God to the world and in the world.  These attributes cannot be made manifest unless they are manifest in our relationship to others.  Paul explores the application of these principles and attributes also in Romans 12: 9 – 21.  Remember that our Lord Jesus came “not to abolish the Law, but to fulfill”.  Thus, it is established that our task is to bear much fruit and that fruit-bearing is lawful, congruent with Hebraic legacy.  Notice that the Apostle says the fruit of the Spirit is (singular), not fruits of the Spirit are (plural); yet, he goes on to list nine elements of the fruit of the Spirit.  A useful means for visualizing this truth is to consider an orange.  The single fruit, encased in its distinctive skin, is called an orange- whole, undivided.  However, once you peel it to get at the sweet, juicy edible fruit inside, you may find as many as nine sections that comprise the one orange.  Each section bears the distinctive taste of an orange.  Thus, when the apostle Paul refers to the fruit of the Spirit in the singular, it is helpful to think of an orange.”


William H. “Bill” Hicks is a graduate of Wesleyan University, BA, Religion, 1971 who also holds a Masters in Public Health Degree (MPH) from the University of Oklahoma Hudson College of Public Health (1973). Bill also has studied at the Dallas Theological Seminary. He grew up in Harlem, New York City, USA during the 1950s and 1960s, graduating from high school before attending Mount Hermon Preparatory School and undergraduate school in Connecticut. He has spent most of his professional life in the public health arena, while being constantly in ministry. He received his license to preach the Gospel at Oklahoma City, OK in 1971. He has written extensively on Christian topics. He enjoys life in Chattanooga, TN with former District Public Defender Ardena Garth Hicks, his wife of 30 years. They have two daughters, Rachel (BA, University of Memphis magna cum laude, 2014) and Sarah (Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude, Global Scholar, University of Tulsa, 2017).
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3 Responses to BILL’S BLOG ENTRY #15

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