Daily Reading: (Galatians 5:22-23, John 15:4):
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”
All believers have fruit that we bear as a result of being attached permanently to the vine, Jesus Christ (John 15) and as we live from who Jesus has made us to be, we truly are a-core-able.
So let’s look at the wonderful fruit basket we have been given by the Holy Spirit that lives in the hearts of believers in Galatians 5:22-23.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”
This is unbelievable especially when it comes to fruits that we might struggle more with. At times it feels like for me that the patience fruit fell out of my basket. But when I am not feeling very patient it is incredibly helpful to remember patience is who we are at the core.
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunesso that it will be even more fruitful.
A better translation is not that God the master gardener cuts off every branch in Him that bears no fruit because that makes no sense. If you are in Jesus you are saved. The Greek word (airo) translated cuts off here should be rendered “takes up or lifts every branch in me.” If you’re not bearing fruit for Jesus, God helps you by lifting you up. He doesn’t cut you off.
In the New Testament, airo is more often translated as lifted or taken up than taken away or cut off. The text itself supports that Jesus lifts us up as grape vines are lifted to bear more fruit. The gardener does all the work, and the branches become fruitful as a result. What a beautiful picture of God’s aiding grace.
“Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” Remain does not mean Christ is with you one moment and discards you the next. Menō means to abide, continue, dwell, endure, be present.
As you are present in His presence the result is fruit will be born in your life (John 15:4). This is totally amazing because this basket of various fruits of the Spirit is what is promised to happen in my life as I spend time with the Savior.
So what does it mean to abide in the vine?
Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God (1 John 4:15).
Have you confessed that Jesus is the Son of God? Then God abides in you and you in Him.
As branches we’re not called to produce fruit but to bear the fruit that the Living Vine produces in us. Our part is to simply abide in the Vine. Abiding in Jesus is to rest in him, to trust him, and to quit trying to bear fruit apart from him.