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by Steve Countryman
10/20/2011 / Christian Living
Matthew 7: 17-20 17Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. John 15:2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
The Bible was written back in a time when farming and gardening were things that everyone did. Growing up in the big city, I had a hard time following the passages about seeds, planting, fruit and harvesting. In my prayer time God showed me why your fruit is so important. Say you are walking along a road and see some fruit trees in the distance. You are too far from them to tell what kind of trees they are. Their foliage is not distinguishable to you at your distance. So you look to see if you can see any fruit on them. Two things you notice about the trees. First is the fruit on them and second is the amount of fruit on them. Some have tons of fruit and are loaded down. Others have a fair amount on them and look good. But there are some who have bad fruit or no fruit on them at all. It is easy for anyone to spot which tree is which by its fruit. Just like the Bible says, they are known by their fruit. Likewise, people should have no need to ask you if you are a Christian. It should be obvious to them by your fruit!
The master gardener has spent lots of time and care pruning, watering, fertilizing and feeding his trees. It is now harvest time and the fruit is ready to pick. Those trees that have fruit on them make the master gardener happy. Those which are heavy laden with fruit they are the ones that the master gardener cherishes. But those trees that have bad fruit or no fruit will be cut down and burned. What is amazing to me is that it seems always to be the Christians with no good fruit that are the ones advising others what is good and what is not. They have not let their branches be pruned. They do not accept the feeding of the Word to help them grow. They think that as long as they hang out in the orchard, they will be included with the rest. They lack good fruit in their lives. They have not experienced first hand God, His Son Jesus or The Holy Spirit. They lack that personal experience with Jesus!
It is like standing in line to get on a ride. The ride is enclosed and you cannot see any part of the ride. People getting off of the ride are excited and laughing because they enjoyed their experience. Looks like a good choice to ride. There is a group of people who are standing off to the side of the ride complaining that the ride is a joke. They claim to be experts. They say that it is a waste of your time and money. When asked about their experiences on the ride you find out that they boast about their experiences on other rides but none of them have even been on this ride. They have not experienced the ride but yet they are telling everyone who will listen that the ride is not worth the experience.
Those are the people who call themselves Christian though they serve their religion they do not serve God. They think more of what others think of them than what God thinks of them. They are more concerned with their position among their peers and being known as "super spiritual" believers. Yet the question remains where is their good fruit?
When good fruit is produced the seed is carried in the fruit. Without the fruit there is nothing to carry the seed and the seed can not reproduce. You are the plant who bears the fruit. Your fruit can be a simple thing from your lifestyle and daily routines, including who you hang with, what you say, what you do for others, how you bless others, and whether you give of your time, talent and or money to benefit others without expecting anything in return. As you produce more fruit, the seed from your fruit begins to multiply your harvest. You serve a God of multiplication who loves to multiply your blessings of seed. You are God's Kingdom representative here on earth. Your fruit is important to God's Kingdom and is how you represent His Kingdom to others. The more good fruit you have, the more and better influence you have on your surroundings. More fruit equals more seed, more seed equals more fruit! Because of your good and bountiful fruit your seed keeps multiplying and you are a blessings to others because of it. That means that you are also blessed! Are you ready?!?
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