John 15:8 “This is to My Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples.”
I often ask Christians what they are doing to fulfill God’s purposes in their lives. This always brings a “deer in the headlight look.” Or another question that furrows the eyebrows is, “How is God bearing fruit in your life?” Most Christians reply that their purpose is to glorify God. Few Christians realize that being fruitful is the integral link to glorifying God. In John 15:1-8, God’s purpose is laid out with instructions in five succinct points. They are not difficult. They just require you to allow God to be God!
First. In John 15:3, Jesus explains, “You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.” You must be a Christian. You are not cleansed by the blood of Christ unless you have wholeheartedly committed your life to Him as your Lord and Savior. Romans 10:9 tells how: “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Second. Develop an intimate, passionate relationship with Jesus as He says in John 15:5, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in Me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing.” You must cultivate a relationship with Christ that allows Him to captivate and own your life.
Third. Allow God to continually bring ongoing convictions of who you are and what you are doing, so that you might be pruned for righteousness. Jesus, in John 15:1-2, teaches, “I am the true vine, and My Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit, He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.” A powerful way of doing this is to allow God to speak one truth into your life each day in your daily quiet time. End by writing a very brief application that records how God spoke to you and what God wants from you.
Fourth. Pray for God to help you apply your daily application through personal change or in the lives of others. Let God enliven His truth and life in you as He transforms you into His Kingdom on earth. Jesus explains in John 15:7, “If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.” Do not allow your God to be mere written words on a page. Allow your God to be alive and active in you as He uses each day’s application in your life.
Fifth. Repeat the First through Fourth points every day throughout the rest of your life. In John 15:6, Jesus warns, “If anyone does not remain in Me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.” Failing to live out these four points usually results in Christians lifelessly living the Christian life. God wants you to not only experience Him, but to also live in His power. When Jesus was asked when the Kingdom of God was coming, He said it was meant to be experienced now – not just in the future.
Luke 17:20-21 “Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, ‘The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, “Here it is,” or “There it is,” because the kingdom of God is within you.’ ”
I invite you to go to www.growinginChrist.net for two free resources that will help your application of this teaching: The first free resource is “Good News” – how to know Christ as your Lord and Savior and the second is “Spending Time with God.” These are located at the bottom of the landing page of www.growinginChrist.net.
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Here are some Bible studies from Growing in Christ to help your transformative experience: “Your Life in Christ” and “Discipleship.”