When we are abiding in Christ, we automatically begin to bear fruit in our lives. And to clarify, by bearing fruit in Christ I mean our obedience to His Word and reflecting the character and nature of Christ. Abiding in Christ means allowing His Word to fill our minds, direct our wills, and transform our desires. In other words, our relationship to Christ, our abiding in Christ is directly linked to what we do with our Bibles!
We continue with the question:
Do you know anything of living the life of habitual fellowship with Christ?
By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.John 15:8
Why must we read God’s Word? Because that’s what it means to abide in Christ and that is the means through which we bear fruit. As Christ’s Word dwells in us and the Spirit fills us, we will begin to pray in a way consistent with the will of God.
If we do not abide in Christ, we very easily misapply what Jesus says in John 15:7 “You will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.” The same principle is found in John 14:14, “If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.” Praying in His name is not merely adding “in Jesus’ name” to the end of a prayer. It means praying for things that align with the Words and the will of God.
That is why those who truly abide will bear fruit. The natural result of abiding in Christ is spiritual fruit. But sometimes we think we can bear fruit alone and forget God worked through us to produce the fruit. A branch can bear no fruit if it is apart from the vine.
Bearing fruit is not a matter of how talented you are, how experienced you are, where you are from or how you look. Whatever your gifts, accomplishments, or virtues, they cannot produce the fruit of faith if you do not abide in Jesus Christ.
Christians who think they are bearing fruit apart from abiding in Christ will find themselves constantly frustrated and unhappy with the circumstances of their lives. If you don’t abide in Christ, you forget that your value isn’t found in the fruit you bear. You forget that your value comes from the faithfulness in the decisions you make to glorify God. Regardless of what the fruit is.
To bear genuine fruit, you must abide in Christ and if you draw near to Him, Jesus says God will draw near to you. Strip away all the things of the world. Put aside the sins that distract you and sap your energy. Put aside everything that robs you of a deep, personal, loving relationship with Jesus. Stay apart from sin and be grafted in God’s Word. Having done all that, you don’t have to worry about bearing fruit. It is not your concern. You will automatically begin fulfilling God’s will in your life when you are abiding in Christ.
Some Christians find reading the Bible bland and boring and are indifferent about sharing their faith. Other Christians find those things exciting and their convictions remain consistent over time. If you look carefully, you will find that one is focused on the doing, and the other is focused on the being. They are focused on a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Don’t focus on the doing; focus on your relationship with Jesus Christ. The doing will grow naturally out of your relationship to Him. One of the most fulfilling experiences in life is to bear the fruit of faith. If it isn’t happening in your life, the reason is simple— you are not abiding in Christ.