1.The Secret Of Living Is Bearing Fruit
I. THE DIFFERENT KINDS OF FRUIT WE ARE TO BEAR
A. POINTING SOULS TO CHRIST AND HELPING THEM GROW...
1. Paul speaks of this kind of "fruit" in Romans 1:13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.
2. One of the characteristics of a branch bearing fruit is that it produces a product identical to itself
3. Therefore, one way a disciple bears fruit is by producing another disciple!
B. SHARING WITH THOSE IN NEED...
1. Paul speaks of contributing to the poor as a "fruit" in Romans 15:25-28 But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints. For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem. It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things. When therefore I have performed this, and have sealed to them this fruit, I will come by you into Spain.
2. Jesus certainly did this - 2 Corinthians 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Master Yehoshua Messiah, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
3. So if the "Vine" did this, we should expect His "branches" to do the same -
1 John 3:16-18 By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But if any one has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does Elohim's love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth.
C. DEVELOPING MESSIAH-LIKE CHARACTER...
1. Notice that the "fruit" of the Spirit is the development of certain graces -
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
2. One who abounds in such qualities is growing in the "knowledge of Yehoshua Messiah" -
2 Peter 1:5-8 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Master Yehoshua Messiah.
3. Indeed, he is being "renewed...according to the image of Him who created him" - Colosians 3:9-11 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds. And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Messiah is all, and in all.
D. PRAISING GOD AND GIVING THANKS...
1. The author of Hebrews describes such activities as "fruit" - Hebrews 13:15 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to Elohim continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.
2. Again, the "Vine" was known for such behavior - Luke 10:21 In that hour Yehoshua rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight.;
John 11:41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Yehoshua lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.
3. Should His "branches" do any less?
[These are different kinds of "fruits" we can bear as "branches" of the
"Vine." But how does bearing such fruit make for the "abundant life" which Yehoshua promised?
II. THE BENEFITS OF BEARING SUCH FRUIT
A. THERE IS GREAT "JOY" FOR THOSE WHO WIN SOULS...
1. John says that there is "no greater joy" - 3 John 3-4 For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
2. Paul's converts at Thessalonica were his "pride and joy" -
1 Thessalonians 2:19-20 For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Master Yehoshua Messiah at his coming? For ye are our glory and joy.
3. So those involved in the winning and confirming of souls for Messiah find great joy as they see the fruits of their labors
B. THERE IS GREAT "HAPPINESS" FOR THOSE WHO SHARE THEIR
1. They learn by experience the truthfulness of Yehoshua's teachings
2. Who said, "It is more blessed to give than to receive" - Acts 20:35 the Lord Jesus
3. The word "blessed" can be translated "O how very happy", so there is greater happiness in giving than in receiving
C. THERE IS GREAT "ASSURANCE" FOR THOSE WHO DEVELOP CHRIST-LIKE CHARACTER...
1. Those in whom "the fruit of the Spirit" is produced are free from any condemnation of law - Galatians 5:23b - against such there is no law.; Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Messiah Yehoshua, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
2. Those who abound in the "knowledge of our Master Yehoshua Messiah" (i.e., develop the graces described) have the assurance of an "abundant entrance" into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord
- 2 Peter 1:8-11 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Master Yehoshua Messiah. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Master and Saviour Yehoshua Messiah.
3. For example, those who love in deed and truth have an assurance of their salvation - 1 John 3:18-19 Little children, let us not love in word or speech but in deed and in truth. By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before him
D. THERE IS GREAT "PEACE" FOR THOSE GIVEN TO THANKSGIVING...
1. For those with the "an attitude of gratitude", there is the "peace of Elohim" -
Phillipians 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto elohim. And the peace of Elohim, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Messiah Yehoshua.
2. A peace which...
a. "Surpasses all understanding"!
b. "Will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus"!
THE ABUNDANT LIFE IS:
1. A life filled with...
2. Therefore The Secret Of Living Is Bearing Fruit, and this "abundant life" is available to only those who will "bear fruit" as "branches" of the "True Vine" (Jesus Christ)!
The secret to living is bearing fruit...
then the next question: Is there a secret to bearing fruit?