Blog

Dec
02
ABIDING IN CHRIST

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The Christian life is all about abiding in Christ and the result of abiding in Christ is Fruit. The more we abide the more fruit God can produce through us. It is the desire of the Christian to be fruitful.

When I think of fruit I think of The Orchard as pictured here in John 15. The Orchard is the place God has chosen to bring forth fruit. It is the place He has made Himself the Caretaker, Farmer, Husbandman.

So when I think of fruit I think of an Orchard. When I think of an Orchard bearing fruit I think of God and abiding with Him for the process. We are all impotent when it comes to producing fruit, we simply bear fruit and God does the miraculous. Without Him we can do nothing and with Him we can do all things.

It’s our job in the Orchard He has planted us in to abide in Christ and watch the miraculous happen.

The Christian life is a supernatural life. No Christian, of themselves, has what it takes to live it. Jesus made this clear when He said, “without me you can do nothing.” He alone is the source of a fruitful life. Until we believe this and practice this we will never live a successful Christian life.

Although the Lord promised to provide fruit for His people Israel in the land of promise, a land flowing with milk and honey, the realization of this promise was contingent upon their complete obedience. If His people were disobedient, the very ground where the fruit grew would suffer God’s judgment. Yet upon a return to the Lord in complete obedience and to living a fruitful, faithful life, “the LORD will once more rejoice over you to make you prosperous just as He rejoiced over your ancestors, if you obey the LORD your God and keep His commandments and statues that are written in this scroll of the law. But you must turn to Him with your whole mind and being”.

Thus for the Old Testament believer a godless, sinful, and selfish life would produce bad fruit. But where the believer led a fruitful, obedient, and righteous life before God, “obeying the LORD’s commands”, his life would be “like a tree planted by flowing streams; it yields its fruit at the proper time” (Ps. 1:2-3). Such a life would be characterized by purity of speech, a holy walk, and producing good works. Jesus and the apostles added even more specific details as to the fruitful nature of a spirit-filled walk, which is available and necessary for a proper Christian life.

In John 15 we see the picture of an abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. We as followers of Christ are the branches, created to bear fruit. He is the vine that the branches are attached to, the source of life for the branches and the source of the fruit the branches bear.

Branches are not designed to produce fruit, only to bear it. They are totally dependent on the vine for fruit. The fruit of the Spirit is produced in the believer, not by the believer. The sole responsibility of the believer is to abide in Christ, to live in total dependence on Him through the constant yielding to the Holy Spirit.

  • Fruit never comes by trying, but by Trusting.

  • Fruit does not appear all at once. First it flowers or blossoms, then comes a tiny fruit which develops into maturity.

  • To complete the process the Christian must daily declare dependence on Christ and yield themselves to the Holy Spirit.

The fruit that is produced in the life of a believer is the result of a life spent with Him and it is evidence of abiding in Him. It is evidence of a Spirit Controlled life. Fruit comes in different varieties. There are the souls that we impact in such a way as to lead them to a saving faith in Jesus Christ. There are what Galatians 5 refers to as “the fruit of the Spirit”: love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. Abiding in Christ, staying connected to the vine, will produce these types of fruit!

The true test of a spirit filled life is the character it displays on a day-to-day basis.

Unfortunately, many Christians try to produce fruit on our own. We substitute our own performance for spiritual fruit. But God is not interested in our performance. He cares about our connection to Him, because He has designed that to produce fruit. Jesus says that the only way to live a truly good life is to stay close to Him, like a branch attached to the vine.

Apart from Christ our efforts are unfruitful.

How fruitful is your life?

Lona Elmore