Are you fruitful


“. . .You produce much fruit and prove to be My disciples.” (John 15:2)

Spring is here and the amateur gardeners are vigorously at work. The colorful flowers and the splendor of God’s creation is a delight to the eyes and the fragrance fills the room. But it just struck me that they are dead! They will last but a short while before they wither away, because they are disconnected from the plant that nourished them.

This is what Jesus made known to His disciples. He used the grapevine and its branches as an illustration of the believer’s life In Christ. When we make a commitment to follow Christ and experience salvation, we become branches of Christ. Fruit is produced in each of us as His life flows through us. This relationship requires us to abide in Christ, just as the branches remain in the vine to be fruitful. This opens the door for the Holy Spirit to exercise His authority in our life. As we live in submission and obedience to the Spirit of God, He makes us fruitful. (Galatians 5:22-23) This then is the evidence of an abiding relationship with the source of our fruitfulness.

So, what does it mean to abide? First and foremost, it is an act of obedience from a believer in Jesus. “Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as a branch is unable to produce fruit by itself unless it remains in the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me.” (John 15:4) Again the prophet Isaiah reminds us of the precious promise of God: “. . . I will never forget you. Look, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.” (Isaiah 49:15-16) As we are the branches grafted into Christ, we enjoy many fringe benefits as well. “. . . Righteousness will dwell in the orchard.” (Isaiah 32:16) Jesus also taught the Jews how to experience freedom. “If you continue in my Word, you really are My disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8: 31-32) Finally, “This is how we know we abide in Him and He in us: He has given to us from His Spirit. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God – God remains in him and he in God.” (1 John 4:13-16) These are sure ways to become fruit-bearing branches of Jesus Christ.

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