This is off of our monthly topic, but our class is still studying union with Christ and this past week’s lesson seemed important to share. It’s based on this reading from John 15:
“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[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.” John 15:1-9
Jesus is speaking here to his disciples, explaining that when He is no longer with them, they will still be able to experience His presence through the Spirit. Read closely, and you will find these four principles:
- Our union with Christ is the source of all fruitfulness. My Christian life is not so much about how I can bear fruit, but how I can be closer to Jesus. (wow!, how often I get this one wrong!)
- Our union with Christ requires pruning in order to be more fruitful. (ouch!! This one I don’t always like because it’s painful!)
- This union is nurtured and nourished by the word of God. (Note to self–find time for daily Bible reading)
- The most obvious fruit of this union is love.
So, ask yourselves readers, (as I am asking myself).
- Am I relying on God or on myself?
- Do I see times of pain and difficulty as opportunities to grow closer to Jesus?
- Am I diligent in Bible study and worship, so that I continue to hear His word?
- Are my actions loving?
These are good ways to examine yourself and seek a closer walk with the Savior. He loves you and so do I!
For more about being fruitful see these posts: