Home > Uncategorized > #LEAD2014 Abiding to the Vine and Bearing Fruit

#LEAD2014 Abiding to the Vine and Bearing Fruit

Pastor Tan Chi

Pastor Peter Tanchi

07/06/2014

Jn 15:1-5

I we want to disciple someone, where do we bring them?

  • Classroom
  • Library
  • Garden

A fruitless Christian is not a happy Christian.

Imaging we are asked to organize the best basketball team, how do we choose? Jn 15:16 tells us we are chosen by God to be in his team.

The fruit in a Christian is one of the measures / evidence of a growing Christian. It can come in many forms:

  • Good works (Tit 3:14)
  • Christlike characters (Gal 5:22,23)
  • Much fruit (Jn 15:18)

Character is foundational. Who we are is more important than what we do. We can do a lot of things even when we have no character but we will stop.

Eph 2:8-10 Our salvation is by grace. By faith, we are saved by grace. If we want to be sure of our salvation, look to Jesus. The day we trust him, it is different.

Workmanship (poiema) = masterpiece. We are his masterpiece. A masterpiece has no duplicate. We are special. We are created in Christ Jesus for good works.

There 4 kinds of people according to Jn 15:

  1. No fruit
  2. Bearing fruit but needs pruning to bear more fruit
  3. More fruit
  4. Much fruit

The key to transformation is honesty.

Some of us are contented, as long as we are connected to the vine. The gardener has one main job – to ensure the plants bear fruit. Jesus said he is the vine, and the Father is the gardener. God doesn’t need us to bear fruit but he wants to give us the opportunity to bear fruit. (Jn 15:11)

A fruitful Christian is a joyful Christian. A fruitless Christian has no joy.

Pastor Peter gave advice to single ladies. Don’t just look for a Christian, look for a joyful Christian. If they find one, they it will be heaven on earth.

Jn 15:1 The root word for George is gardener.

Every branch that does not bear fruit, he takes away (airo) Some translations has it as ‘cut off’. It actually means “pick up”. The branches are lowered down, touching the soil, dirt, etc. Picking it up allows it to bear fruit again.

Branches that bear fruit, the garderner prunes it. God uses different tools for pruning. It’s painful when he prunes it. God prunes away things that things that distracts us. It could be painful to us during that time.  But after that, we can bear fruit.

Mk 4:18-19

Pastor Peter was kicked out from his company. He went into the logging business. He transported the logs to the airport. He knew he was doing something wrong. Some other companies exceed their import limit by hundreds of percentage. He decided to just exceed 10%. During on trip, the vehicle turned turtle. He pleaded with God. He felt everything went slow when he was about to die. The car turned back right side up. He was ok but the other person in the car broke his collar born. God told him the next time it would be him. He knew he belonged to God.

Heb 12:6 Even when we don’t feel happy with our life, it doesn’t mean God is angry with us. When enters our mind when we are having hard time? Do we think of our loving Father, our gardener. If we have the wrong idea about God, we cannot be fruitful. God deals with us in our finance, family and careers.

Pain is the megaphone of God’s discipline. He shouts. He also whispers.

Sometimes we wonder why while we are being used by God we still get problem. God wants us to bear even more fruit. Take for example, Joseph. He didn’t do anything wrong. Yet he was sold by his brothers as a slave. He became a manager. He was then tempted and framed by his mistress and put in jail. He became the warden. Was God at work? He was. The gardener is always at work. God is never dependent on us. We need to learn to trust God. He later became the prime minister of the most powerful nation of the world then.

The vine doesn’t bear fruit. It gives energy to the branches. If we have unnecessary leaves, it saps our our energy. The branches become thick and strong and bear much fruit. (Jn 15:5). From pruning, we learn to abide by the Lord.

What does it mean to abide? It does not mean God will do all the work. Granted. the fruit bearing is all God’s work. Yes, our job is to pay attention to God, to be dependent on him. The bigger the ministry, the more time we need more time with God. When we started in a ministry, we don’t know a lot of things so we depended on God. As we pick up more, there is a danger to spend less time with God. We need to slow down, not he activities but to have more time with God.

Pastor Peter shared how abiding in God took CCF in a journey to the many locations until they reached the current location. We don’t worry about God’s part. Our responsibility is to abide.

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