God Wants Every Believer To Bear Fruit
By David J. Stewart | February 2014
Luke 8:15 and John 15:8, “But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience. ... Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
God did not intend for a person to come to Christ for salvation and then sit idle the rest of their days doing nothing for God. Matthew 20:6, “And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?” Most believers today are as idle as can be for God. In fact, many believers are going in reverse, as backslidden as can be, filled with their own ways. Proverbs 14:14, “The backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways: and a good man shall be satisfied from himself.”
We read in Luke 8:15 above that believers with “an honest and good heart, having heard the word, KEEP IT, AND BRING FORTH FRUIT WITH PATIENCE.” This Scripture is found in our Lord's parable of the sower and his seeds. There are four types of scenarios:
- In the first scenario, the seeds fell on stony ground and Satan came, taking away the seed before it could spring forth in new life (Luke 8:12). This is the person who heard the gospel, but never gets saved, distracted by Satan.
- In the second scenario, the seeds fell into shallow soil, bringing forth new life, but are uprooted as soon as the wind blows (Luke 8:13). This is the person who gets saved, but quits serving God over time due to lack of discipleship.
- Then there's the third scenario, which is very common, in which the seeds fell amongst thorny weeds (Luke 8:14). This is the person who gets saved, but is choked by the cares, riches and pleasures of this world. So many believers are good people, as far as sinners go, but they are boggled down by a job, finances, marriage, health issues, family and the cares of life; thus, they are choked the Bible says spiritually and fail to recognize that this earthly life is temporal, a speck of sand in comparison to the eternality of eternity.
- In the fourth scenario, the seeds fell on fertile ground and grew into mature plants, bearing much fruit (Luke 8:15). This is the person who gets saved and follows in obedient faith, sharing the gospel with others and in patience winning OTHERS to Christ. Since this life of 70 years on earth is nothing compared to the NEVER-ENDING length of eternity, it is completely reasonable that we ought to start living now as we will in eternity, that is, living for “THE THINGS WHICH ARE JESUS CHRIST'S.” Philippians 2:20-21, “For I have no man likeminded, who will naturally care for your state. For all seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ's.” Oh, how most believers are dropping the ball, fumbling through the Christian life aimlessly, never accomplishing anything meaningful for Christ. My friend, I challenge you to debt leverage your earthly assets for an eternal lifestyle. Psalms 1:3, “And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.”
I'm not talking about getting saved. Our sonship was secured the moment that we received the gospel as full-payment for our sins (John 1:12). Now as God's child, we are expected to follow in obedient discipleship. Please don't confuse sonship with discipleship as the Lordship Salvation crowd errantly does. They falsely teach that a person cannot be saved unless they surrender to Christ's Lordship. They say things like, “Jesus is either Lord of all or He's not Lord at all.” That's not true. You don't make Jesus Lord, He is Lord. You receive Jesus as your Savior to be saved (to become a son), and then you submit to His Lordship as you grow in grace as a disciple (John 8:31). To learn much more on this topic, please read The Saved, Crucified, Resurrected and Ascended Life (GOOD STUFF!).
How sad that most people's minds are set upon temporal things which cannot be taken into eternity. I don't know about you my friend, but I am going to set my affections on things above. Colossians 3:1-3, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.” I am going to live above the clouds as much as possible, that is, thinking about OTHERS (their needs, burdens, sorrows, including spiritual needs). I am going to earn rewards in Heaven through labouring in prayers (Colossians 4:12). I am going to invest for an eternal lifestyle, laying up treasures for myself in Heaven as Jesus commanded in Matthew 6:19-20, by living each day for Jesus' sake and the gospel's...
Oh let my love with fervor burn, And from the world now let me turn;
Living for Thee, and Thee alone, Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne;
Only one life, “twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.
Only one life, yes only one, Now let me say, “Thy will be done”;
And when at last I’ll hear the call, I know I’ll say “’twas worth it all”;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last. ”
—Missionary C.T. Studd
We are living in apostate times. 1st John 5:19 teaches that the world has always been in wickedness; but in these last days wickedness is increasing because of technology, and the breakdown in the language, national and cultural boundaries which God set in place at the Tower of Babel as safeguards to prevent the escalated corruption of mankind (Genesis 11:7-9). Satan desired to unite humanity in rebellion against God at Babel, but God stopped him. Now, over 4,000 years later, God has allowed Satan to remove the barriers which He set in place at Babel.
If all you do is stack up money, and stack it up, and stack it up, one of these days you'll be in some little retirement place somewhere, trotting out there on your big pot-belly, trying to reach over and pick up the newspaper, and then read it and go get the mail, and then read it and go get the paper. Why? Because that's where you treasure has been!
Please read, Debt Leveraging For An Eternal Lifestyle (money and things test where our affections rest). Debt-Leveraging for Heaven means using everything that you own, everything at your disposal, which includes all your talents, money, influence, even oddities, bad experiences and handicaps, for the glory of God as we preach the gospel, share our testimony to win the unwinnable to Christ, and invest all that we have in the furtherance of the Kingdom of God.
Time is running short. I don't know about you, but I want to make each second, each key stroke, each spoken word, each day, each spent dollar, each prayer, each thought, each everything, count for the precious name of Jesus and the gospel's sake. I want to live each day ABOVE THE CLOUDS where the SUN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS IS ALWAYS SHINING (see also, Colossians 3:1-3), while the rains of criticism, hurt emotions, mean people, disappointments, the problems of this world, and all the cares of this hectic and painful life fall downward upon the earth. Amen! Jesus sits on the right-hand of the Father, ABOVE THE CLOUDS as Colossians 3:1-3 teaches!!!
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!
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