Summary: Series on John 15 part 7
ABIDING IN THE VINE II
Series on John 15 pt. 7
We have all heard the expression that “home is where the heart is”. In other words your true home is in the place that you love the most. The place where you desire most to be. There is certainly a lot of truth to that saying. Both in the physical sense and in the spiritual sense.
Last week we began talking about what it means to abide in Christ. We started out last week by reading John 15:4 which states, “"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.”
I pointed out The Greek word in John 15:4 for abide is “MENO”. It means to “to remain” or “dwell”, to “stay in a certain place”. I would say that it has a sense of living somewhere.
We must understand that we all abide somewhere, not just physically but spiritually speaking as well. By your very existence means you dwell somewhere. And I would say that spiritually speaking, “home is where the heart is”. If your heart is with Christ, if He is what you desire in your live, you will dwell with Him, you will abide with Him. If your heart is not a heart for Christ, then you will not abide with Him. You will abide with the world.
As I stated last week as Christians we are great at throwing around phrases like “we must abide in Christ”. But so often time we do not want to take the time to dig deeper into the Word of God, and see what exactly that means. And not so much what it means, but perhaps more important “How do I do it?” How do I abide in Christ in my life? What things exist in my life that indeed show that I am abiding in Christ? What are some practical practices that I can apply to my life?
Last week we began to look at some of these practical applications. We looked at what is it to abide in Christ in John 15. Just to review very briefly;
We saw from John 15:5 that to abide in Christ means to bear fruit for Christ. To abide in Christ means to bear fruit to and for the glory of God.
We saw from John 15:9 that to abide in Christ means abiding in His love. That perfect, holy love. To abide in Christ is to live in that love, remain in it. To meditate on it. To let the love of Christ dictate how you live and how you act. To abide in Christ’s love is to enjoy the peace and assurance that only His love can bring.
Finally we say in John 15:10 that to abide in Christ means to obey His commandments. To abide in Christ means to live with Christ as Saviour and Lord. To submit to Him. To obey His commands.
Today I want us to look at a couple other passage of scripture in our search to see how is it that we abide in Christ. What marks do we have in your lives that show we are indeed abiding in Him.
So please turn with me to our first passage today which is 1 John 4:11-16. That will be page 1056 in your pew bibles.
“Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 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. By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 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.”
I want us to see what it is to abide in Christ according to these verses.
The first way we see is that to abide in Christ, and thus for Christ to abide in us, (keep in mind that those aspects of the Christian walk cannot be separated), is that we must love one another. Notice what the passage states; “If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.”
Let’s unpack this. Look at what we are being told; “If we love one another, God abides in us…” If we have the love for one another like we should have then God abide in us. Keep in mind what we have been saying. That you cannot abide in Christ and not have Christ abide in you, and you cannot have Christ abide in you and you not abide in Him. These are connected. We see that in verse 6, “God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.”