THE FRUIT OF ABIDING

The Fruit of Abiding

John 15:2 (KJV) 2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every [branch] that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

John chapter 15 has been a staple for me for many years. I love verses such as: John 15:7 (KJV) 7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. But this chapter is more than just encouraging. There is such clear expectation from the Father as to the life of the believer. As you will notice in the second verse of this chapter He expects fruit from us, but what kind of fruit should we expect to show up in our lives?
On the surface we know that He expects us to reach souls for Him, but is there more? I believe this chapter is showing us that as we follow Him we can expect certain things to change in us as well. Check this out.

1. EFFECTUAL PRAYER

John 15:7-8 (KJV) 7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. 8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
As we “abide” in Him we can expect our prayer life to soar! He promises that if we are truly following Him we can ask and receive. I’ve often told our church family here at Victory A/G that I wish I could go back and read certain scriptures for the first time again. Before they became familiar. When I could revel in that child-like faith.

2. PERFECT LOVE

John 15:9 (KJV) 9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
We can know the love of God in greater ways. We know He loves us but isn’t it wonderful when He actively expresses that love to us?

3. DIVINE JOY

John 15:11 (KJV) 11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and [that] your joy might be full.
I don’t know about you but I could use a “full” tank of joy! Jesus stated that his desire was to give us His joy. What a blessing!

So are you “abiding” in Him? Many simply “visit” with Him from time to time. Many see their service to Him as enough. He wants us to abide – to move in! Are you experiencing these characteristics in your own life? If not, why not? Let me know your thoughts.

CAIN WASN’T ABEL

Cain Wasn't Abel.006

What comes to your mind when you think of Cain in the Bible? The man who hated & killed his brother? Well, you would be partly right. But have you ever thought of him as a worshipper? Let’s look a little deeper into this man named Cain.

Genesis 4:3–6

3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. 4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering: 5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. 6 And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?

THERE WAS A PROCESS

1) THE PLACE OF WORSHIP

It says they “brought” their offering to the Lord. We have no way of knowing exactly where this was but they had a predetermined place they would worship God. Thankfully, we are given the mercy & grace to simply come to Jesus to worship. In John chapter 4 the Samaritan woman has this same dilemma. Do we worship in Jerusalem or in this mountain? Jesus lets her know that worshipping in spirit and in truth is the priority.

2) THE TIME OF WORSHIP

“In the process of time.” They had a time of worship. In the Old Testament, times and seasons were very important. Feasts, festivals, Holy days, the Day of Atonement, all had specific times. After Christ, the time frame becomes one of constant urgency. The New Testament is full of commands to “be ready”, “watch”, etc. Everything revolves around a countdown of sorts: the return of Christ.

2 Corinthians 6:2

2 (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)

CAIN’S OFFERING

Why didn’t God accept his offering?

1) BLOODLESS

Hebrews 9:22 (KJV 1900)

22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.

2)FAITHLESS

Hebrews 11:4

4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.

So how does your worship measure up? You see, before this incident we have no indication that Cain was the worst of the two. He made a conscience effort to worship God. As a matter of fact, he worked much harder to produce his offering. Cain also most likely wore the same type of animal skins that God provided for his parents; a symbol of the blood sacrifice that was necessary. Outwardly, Cain looked the part and worked the part, but inwardly there was something missing. It affected his countenance. He worshipped God but was still capable of murder.

Our worship must be more than an outward show of religion. It must be an inward response of the heart!

Leave me your thoughts!