Can sinners produce Holy Spirit fruit?
Galatians 5:24 seems to indicate that only those who have “crucified the flesh” are those who produce it. The reason I bring up this point is that it seems to me that if we receive the Holy Spirit through the word only, then why isn’t a sinner, who has received the word, not saved already? Doesn’t Romans 8:9ff. teach that only those who have the Spirit are Christians? If a person has the word, why isn’t he saved without anything else? Acts 2:41 says that some “gladly received his word” were baptized. If they had received the word, did they have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and wouldn’t they be saved per Romans 8, before baptism? I have struggled with this issue for years; I’ve known men who were scholars who disagree over this. If it is such a simple subject, how can such learned men understand it so differently? As long as a person doesn’t teach that he can perform miracles, or tell me the Lord speaks to him directly, I don’t really get upset over his or her beliefs on the Holy S