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There would be little point in planting a fruit tree, watering it, and fertilising it, if you never got any fruit from it. Somewhere along the line, you'd expect to get some fruit, or you would consider that your work has been in vain.
In much the same way, God has made an immense sacrifice to reconcile us to Himself, to give us a future, and an incomparable destiny. But He expects some fruit from His labours. This is why fruitfulness is a key issue of the Christian life.
John 15:8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.
Fruitfulness is evidence of true discipleship.
Mat 7:17-18 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. (18) A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
Mat 12:33 Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit.
Everyone bears fruit, and the kind of fruit we bear is an indication of the kind of person we are.
Mat 3:10 And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
Mat 7:19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
Mat 21:19 And seeing a fig tree by the road, He came to it and found nothing on it but leaves, and said to it, "Let no fruit grow on you ever again." Immediately the fig tree withered away.
God has an expectation that we will bear good fruit for Him. However you may interpret the above verses, they make it abundantly clear that God will not be happy with fruitlessness.
Mat 13:23 But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
The first secret of fruitfulness is to have the kind of heart that is receptive to God's Word.
Col 1:5-6 because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel, (6) which has come to you, as it has also in all the world, and is bringing forth fruit, as it is also among you since the day you heard and knew the grace of God in truth;
The second secret of fruitfulness is to faithfully proclaim the message of the gospel as the gospel itself bears fruit.
John 15:4-5 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. (5) I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
The third secret of fruitfulness is to abide in Jesus.
Luke 8:14 Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity.
A person whose life is "choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life" will be unable to bring any fruit to maturity.
Luke 13:7-9 Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, "Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?" (8) But he answered and said to him, "Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. (9) And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that you can cut it down."
God often gives people more time to produce fruit - but don't abuse that opportunity.
John 15:2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
Heb 12:11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
God helps already fruitful people to become more fruitful by pruning them; pruning equates to the chastening of the Lord.
One kind of fruit is holiness.
Fruit is the kind of character produced in our lives by the Holy Spirit.
Heb 13:15 Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.
Praise is fruit.
If you like these Topical Bible Studies, don't forget to check out our Expository Bible Studies too.