Bearing Permanent Fruit
John 15:16-17 NKJ: You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.
Here, the Lord Jesus tells us that He wants us not just to bear fruit but to bear fruit that will remain: permanent fruit. Furthermore, He tells us that this fruit is love. In fact, as revealed in 1 Cor. 13. 4-8 love contains all the nine fruit of the spirit listed in Gal. 5.22.
So what does it mean practically to bear permanent fruit?
It means to walk in love in all situations: to behave like God in all situations both pleasant and unpleasant.
Because God is love and He does not change we are not consumed even when we do things that are displeasing to Him. His love causes Him to endure long and be patient and kind to us when we do not deserve it.
Malachi 3:6 NKJV: “For I am the LORD, I do not change; therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.
We are to become more and more like God to the point where we too do not change but respond with the love of God always.
Now when our fruit or the love of God in our lives becomes permanent our election to destiny becomes sure. This is reward no. 6 of the overcomer revealed in
Revelation 3:12-13 NKJV: He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. And I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. 13 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”
This speaks of becoming a ‘pillar in the temple of God ‘, ‘no more going out’ and ‘having God’s name written on him’. This speaks of a permanent operation in the mature love of God (1 Jn. 4.8, 12, 16; Jn. 15.7, 16) and so speaks of making your election sure. Like the Apostles John, Peter and James who were called ‘pillars’ (Gal. 2.9).
In addition, when we have permanent fruit we are certain of answers to all of our prayers:
‘that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.’
How then do we bear permanent fruit? By practicing the love of God in our daily conduct by the power of Holy Spirit in reading, speaking, praying, meditating and practicing the written Word.
1 John 2:5 NKJV: But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him.
1 John 4:12-13, 16 NKJV: No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us. 13 By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. 16 And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
It is instructive to observe that bearing no fruit causes one to be in danger of being cut off from Christ and cast into hell fire.
John 15:2, 6 NIV: He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, 6 If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers;such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.
Matthew 5:22 NIV: But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.
Bearing some fruit that withers also places one in the same danger.
Jude 12 KJV: These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;
It is pertinent at this point to ask the question what makes fruit wither?
Negligence of the spiritual exercises of honesty, humility, prayer, reading, study, confession, meditation and practice of the Word will cause fruit to wither under the pressure of the lusts of the flesh, of the eyes and the pride of life.
Mark 4:19 NKJV: and the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.
Galatians 5:16-17 NKJV: I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
So you need to keep your heart with all diligence and without of offence and stay in the Word and prayer for your fruit not to wither and to increase in fruit bearing to the point where the fruit becomes much and permanent.
Proverbs 4:23 NKJV: Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.
Acts 24:16 KJV: And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.
Psalms 1:1-3 NKJV: Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. 3 He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither;
Deuteronomy 17:14-15, 18-20 NKJV: “you shall surely set a king over you whom the LORD your God chooses; one from among your brethren. 18 when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book, from the one before the priests, the Levites. 19 And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God and be careful to observe all the words of this law and these statutes, 20 that his heart may not be lifted above his brethren, that he may not turn aside from the commandment to the right hand or to the left, and that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he and his children in the midst of Israel.
Bearing some fruit that does not wither makes your calling to heaven sure.
However, it is only bearing much and permanent fruit that makes your election to destiny sure.
So, we should exercise ourselves in the love of God not just to bear some fruit but to bear much fruit that becomes permanent to make both our calling and election sure.