Summary: If we are going to be productive and fruitful Christians, then we need to live by the same principles that Jesus taught his disciples.
“HOW TO BE A FRUITFUL CHRISTIAN”
Dr. Dennis Deese - www.dennisdeese.com
“For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
Before salvation, we fail short of glorifying God; now however, we are enabled to and should live for the purpose of glorifying Him (see 15:8).
“Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:12)
“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” ( Galatians 2:20)
This is Christ’s farewell sermon. Now that Jesus was about to leave the disciples, he knew they would be tempted to leave him. From a vine we look for grapes and from a Christian we look for Christianity. Jesus taught his disciples how to live a productive Christian life.
If we are going to be productive and fruitful Christians, then we need to live by the same principles that Jesus taught his disciples. What are the principles that will enable each of us to live a productive life? There are three basic yet essential principles. There is the:
I. ABIDING PRINCIPLE 15:4, 7 “Abide in me”
Every phrase Jesus spoke, is a revelation of an empowering element that will enable us, in a practical sense, to abide in our union with Him (our positional union with Him is eternal).
“Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;” (John 8:31)
“And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.” (1 John 2:28)
“Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:11)
B. Assurance 4b “I in you”
C. Dependancy 4c “The branch cannot bear fruit of itself”
D. Humility 5a “I am the vine, ye are the branches”
E. Faith 5b “The same bringeth forth much fruit”
F. Spirituality 5c “Without me ye can do nothing”
II. APPLICATION PRINCIPLE 15:5, 7, 10, 14 “Can do”
There are several essential factors that lead to the fulfillment of applying God’s word
A. Listening - concentrating on the message
“But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.” (James 1:22-25)
B. Trusting - knowing what is said is right
C. Believing - depending on the validity of the message
D. Desiring - wanting direction for your life
E. Loving - 15:10 we do because we love Him
F. Enjoying - 15:10 His joy in us is the fulfillment of our joy and He enjoys serving the Father. We want to feel good before we do something but you feel good after you do something.
III. ASKING PRINCIPLE 15:7; 16 “Ye shall ask”
There are three things indicated when a Christian has a consistent prayer life.
A. Consciousness of God
B. Control by God
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.” (Proverbs 3:5-7)
C. Confidence in God
Ps 31:24 Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD.
Ps 33:18 Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy;
Ps 39:7 And now, Lord, what wait I for? my hope is in thee.
Ps 42:11 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.
Ps 71:5 For thou art my hope, O Lord GOD: thou art my trust from my youth.
Ps 146:5 Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God:
Jer 17:7 Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.