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Discussion Forum : General Topics : Christian, where is the fruit?

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StirItUp
Member



Joined: 2016/6/4
Posts: 941
Johannesburg, South Africa

 Christian, where is the fruit?

WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS

"There is no allowance whatever in the New Testament for the man who says he is saved by grace but who does not produce the graceful goods. Jesus Christ by His Redemption can make our actual life in keeping with our religious profession."

Studies in the Sermon on the Mount


_________________
William

 2017/9/5 9:13Profile









 Re: Christian, where is the fruit?

How much fruit do we need to have (or how many "goods" do we have to produce) in order to proove our salvation?

 2017/9/5 13:29
StirItUp
Member



Joined: 2016/6/4
Posts: 941
Johannesburg, South Africa

 Re:

Hey John,

The Father is the husbandman and He will prune us that we may bear more fruit, however even from the very first moment of believing, of being born again, there must be evidence or fruit. John says that believers will know they have passed from death to life by the evidence that they will have a supernatural love for one another.

No way the life of Christ can live in us without it being expressed through us.

Galatians 5 verse 22:"But the fruit of the Spirit * is love, * joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, * gentleness, and * self-control. Against such things there is no law. Now those who belong to Christ * have crucified the flesh * with its passions * and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also behave in accordance with * the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, * provoking * one another, being jealous * of one another."

Blessings,


_________________
William

 2017/9/5 14:36Profile
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 1971
Joplin, Missouri

 Re:

Quote:
How much fruit do we need to have (or how many "goods" do we have to produce) in order to proove our salvation?



Jon: James wrote that one might say he has faith without works, but I will demonstrate my faith by my works. Jesus cursed the fig tree for not bearing figs. If you were to say "I am born again", yet your life lacked the obvious fruit of rebirth, then I must question whether or not you were born again as you said.

No amount of good works in the world can bring about right relationship with God and no amount of good works is needed to prove salvation. If one is truly born again, the fruit will be a natural outflow of the root that is now in Christ Jesus. If the fruit is missing, the root must not be in Christ. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. It is the nature of the thing. I will know that you have been born again because your tree will bear the good fruit that is the natural result of rebirth.


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Travis

 2017/9/5 15:18Profile









 Re:

Thanks for the answers


And if you think you fall short of this fruit, or at least find it hard to discern, what should you do?

 2017/9/5 18:12
StirItUp
Member



Joined: 2016/6/4
Posts: 941
Johannesburg, South Africa

 Re: Repent, and do the first works again...

Hi John,

As brother Travis explained, the fruit is, in a sense, an automatic result of being in the right root. And being rightly connected to the root with nothing blocking the flow of life from the root to the branch.

Our root is Christ. He is the Vine and we are the branches.We are engrafted into Christ by faith.

So when we believed the good news about Jesus Christ with our hearts and confessed Him with our mouths as Lord, we were “born again”,
Born from above, born of the Spirit.

The apostle John says: He who confesses that Jesus is the Son of God will find that God lives in him and he in God.
By this we know that God lives in us, by His Spirit Whom He has given us.

So the first thing we need to check is: Are we in Christ? Is our faith real? Have we the witness of the Spirit of God?
Was our confession just a mental agreement, or was it a heart commitment to Christ?

Maybe our hearts have become cold and hardened through sin, or divided between loyalty to Christ and to the things of this world.

If so, I find no better letter than the one from James to address these issues. I suggest you read it carefully and prayerfully and follow its very practical advice.

I have copied some portions here below.

God bless,


James 1 verse 19 to 27: Listening and Doing

19My dear brothers and sisters, take note of
this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to
speak and slow to become angry, 20because our
anger does not produce the righteousness that
God desires. 21Therefore, get rid of all moral filth
and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept
the word planted in you, which can save you.
22Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive
yourselves. Do what it says. 23Those who
listen to the word but do not do what it says are
like people who look at their faces in a mirror
24and, after looking at themselves, go away and
immediately forget what they look like. 25But
those who look intently into the perfect law that
gives freedom and continue in it—not forgetting
what they have heard but doing it—they will be
blessed in what they do.
26Those who consider themselves religious
and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues
deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.
27Religion that God our Father accepts as
pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans
and widows in their distress and to keep oneself
from being polluted by the world.

James 4 verse 1 to 10: Submit Yourselves to God

4 What causes fights and quarrels among you?
Don’t they come from your desires that battle
within you? 2You desire but do not have, so you
kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want,
so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because
you do not ask God. 3When you ask, you do not receive,
because you ask with wrong motives, that
you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
4You adulterous people, don’t you know that
friendship with the world means enmity against
God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the
world becomes an enemy of God. 5Or do you
think Scripture says without reason that he jealously
longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in
us? c 6But he gives us more grace. That is why
Scripture says:
“God opposes the proud
but shows favor to the humble and
oppressed.” d
7Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the
devil, and he will flee from you. 8Come near to
God and he will come near to you. Wash your
hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you
double-minded. 9Grieve, mourn and wail. Change
your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will
lift you up.


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William

 2017/9/6 3:44Profile
JFW
Member



Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1153
Dothan, Alabama

 Re: 22Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.

Yes dear brother, obedience is essential,.. wonder why so many resist/deny it? Is it not stated plainly enough?
How can there be fruit without obedience....


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Fletcher

 2017/9/6 6:38Profile
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 1971
Joplin, Missouri

 Re:

Quote:
And if you think you fall short of this fruit, or at least find it hard to discern, what should you do?



Jon:

I think that all too often we begin to define ourselves and our walk with God by what we do. It is almost as if we enter into a new kind of law. Not the levitical law necessarily, but a law all the same. We get trapped in trying to somehow please God and earn relationship with Him through our works. It is as if we are a tree that is trying very, very hard to produce apples so that it will be known as a good apple tree. We are a men trying very, very hard to produce the fruit of God, the fruit of the spirit, the fruit of relationship so that we can see ourselves as a successful Christian. This is a trap and a rat race that will lead us into bondage.

Our walk with God is first and foremost a relationship. We have been reconciled to God through Christ Jesus. This means that right relationship has been restored through Christ and His blood. And, as in any good relationship, the level of intimacy grows over time as we pursue a deeper and deeper knowledge of who He is and who He has made us to be. The level of intimacy grows as we spend time with Father. As a result, we begin to sink down deep roots of intimacy with Him. From those deep roots we find our outward behavior changing. It is not like we are trying to produce a certain outward behavior, but it is that we find ourselves changing to be like Him as we spend time in His presence.

So, if we do not find ourselves bearing the right kind of fruit, the answer is not to struggle to somehow manufacture that fruit. Who wants plastic fruit. The answer is found in deepening the level of intimacy with Him. Get into His presence and begin to spend time fellowshipping with Him. Simply sink your roots deeper into the water of His love and watch as He begins to transform you. The fruit will come naturally.


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Travis

 2017/9/6 21:55Profile
JFW
Member



Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 1153
Dothan, Alabama

 Re:

Brother Travis,

Yes, I share in your observations -
And for years fell into the type of bondage you describe, trying to please God by my efforts to do things for Him. This produced a self-righteousness and not godly fruit as my focus was on myself rather than Christ. While on the outside I looked like and received the credit for godliness,... at times inside I had frustration and bitterness, judgement and unforgiveness. Still the Lord was patient and merciful with me as He consistently and gently broke me down by exposing my motives all while correcting and teaching me.
Now not that He is finished His work in me, but He has shown me that fruits are the result of abiding in Him, (resting from futile attempts to please Him in my flesh), and praising Him, praying prayers of thanksgiving for all He has done. Witnessing His spirit work in and thru me in the smallest of ways, and acknowledging Him in them. Now knowing that whatever we focus on will grow or be magnified, He becomes both the source and objective of my life. From Him it flows and unto Him the glory goes.
This is why (for me) obedience is essential- not like I've "got to" rather I "get to" and the joy and peace flow freely.
It really came down to "why".... and once I could see that my motives were wrong as they were nothing more than humanism, then the struggle- the bondage was apparent. It was at first humiliating tho as I let go of my pride the humility turned to humbleness. Still there are several areas He continues to work on me, molding me, showing me I haven't surrendered a particular thing or area of my life to Him and little by little, piece by piece He overtakes my life with His as I yield to Him. That's where the fruit are evident,... they are simply the product of His presence and the more I yield to Him the more fruit He produces in and thru me:)


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Fletcher

 2017/9/7 0:12Profile
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 1971
Joplin, Missouri

 Re:

Fletcher: AMEN brother! The why is the big question. Right now God is speaking very strongly in our fellowship about obedience. Obedience is critical. But the motive is everything. When I obey out of a revelation of His love for me and a consistent and vibrant relationship with Him, then my obedience is the genuine fruit of righteousness. When I obey out of obligation, hoping to earn my way into His graces through my actions, then my obedience is among the dead works that are listed in Hebrews 6:1 that we are to repent of. It is my own effort at self-righteousness and is fleshly and without life.


_________________
Travis

 2017/9/7 11:39Profile





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