True or false:
God is glorified by us bearing much fruit.
True or false:
Jesus wants us to PROVE that we are his disciples.
1. True 2.) True.
I can’t make this stuff up–I never would have thought #2 was true, but it makes sense. Here’s the verse:
By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.
Jesus is here talking about how He is the vine and we are the branches and apart from Him we are dead twigs. I think maybe I had never read it in the ESV before.
It all strikes me as extremely “one or the other”. A branch that is connected will bear fruit. A branch that is NOT connected will lie on the ground unfruitful. Why do I feel like so many believers think of themselves as some sort of dormant mostly attached twig that is waiting to grow? If you are in Him, he is pruning you and preparing you or currently using you to bear fruit. If that is not happening, then make sure you’re connected.
What’s fruit? Not works, not doing nice things. Just love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. He can bear that in you when you’re zoomed in on him even if you’re not focused on “doing”. If you feel like nothing is working/changing in ministry or outside stuff, maybe that is because he is making more fruit during your inside times with just Him and you.
And just so we do not stress out about it, Jesus follows verse 8 (Prove you are disciples) immediately with:
“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.”
So far he had not been talking about love, but just about Him and God and the Word (remain in me, and have my words remain in you and bear fruit and be disciples). Then all of a sudden he explains that:
1.) Jesus loves us AS MUCH AS the FATHER loves Him!
2.) We should abide (stay, remain) in His love.
I would love to go verse by verse here, but it’s late, I’ve got beach-tiredness against me and besides, this way you may be inspired to go read all of John 15. You may ask, “WAIT. HOW do i remain in his love?” Go check it out! Send me a comment, FB message, tweet or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) telling me how to remain in his love.