John 15:7-8, “If ye abide in Me and My words abide in you … Herein is My Father glorified, that ye bear MUCH fruit; so shall ye be My disciples.”
1 Corinthians 15:58, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord …”
While we are commanded to be faithful Christians, we are also commanded to be fruitful Christians. While we are commanded to abide in Christ (our walk with God), we are also commanded to abound in Christ (our work for God). We must never forget this, lest we become complacent in our walk with and work for Christ.
God has ordained that we GO and bring forth fruit and that our fruit should remain (John 15:16)!
Have you ever felt the tension between abounding in Christ and abiding in Christ? Of course, you have. So have I. We all live with it every day. It’s seems to be unending. Our Lord Jesus lived with it throughout his ministry. In Mark 1 Jesus withdrew into the desert to abide with his Father, then plunged into the city to abound in his work, then withdrew while it was still dark to abide, only to be accosted by Peter who’s upset that Jesus didn’t leave a pager number (“All men seek for thee”). Jesus doesn’t say: “Don’t bother me—I’m abiding.” He goes off to abound some more!
A key to fruitfulness (fruit of the Spirit and fruits of service) is our abiding in Christ and allowing His words to abide in us (John 15:7-8). Another way to put it is this: Our abiding in Christ will result in our abounding with Christ!
Two questions we should ask ourselves on a regular basis:
- Am I abiding in Christ?
- Am I abounding with Christ?
We all need the proper Spirit-led balance between these two!
Just reflecting on those “red letters” of Jesus!