Apples of Gold

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I have chosen you

‘Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you’

John 15:16

 

Chosen by God! Wow! What a privilege! How many of us are truly aware of the honour bestowed upon us? As Christians, do we take our God and all His benefits for granted? It seems that once saved we are happy to live on a level where we do not wish anything to disturb our equilibrium.

For many, the Christian life holds no challenge. Why put ourselves out when others will do it? We are happy to accept the benefits of being a Christian, however we get very embarrassed if we are asked to do something for Him.

We shun the shame of the cross. There is no need for me to tell the whole world that I am a Christian. I am happy to keep these things quiet. I am happy to get on with my life without doing harm to anyone or causing offence. I’ll be humble and keep these things to myself.

Life after all is hard enough. No point in making things worse!

Can you imagine the kind of world we would be living in today, if our forefathers in the faith had thought and lived in like manner? Sadly that is the way with many claiming to be Christians in our day. Many are so well off with regards to material possessions, health and financial security that they assume that the Lord is well pleased with their lives.

They bear no fruit whatsoever. It does not seem to bother them. They are regular attendants at every church meeting and there is no outward sin that anyone can accuse them of. They love nothing better than to sit in judgement. Fault finding is their speciality. I wonder just how many read verse two of this chapter and take it to heart?

It is fearful!

I cannot understand any Christian who does not want to bear fruit for his Saviour. I know full well that we fail each and every day of our lives in this respect, however there is surely a spirit within us that yearns not only to bear fruit, but to bear much fruit. It is as natural to the spiritual man as breathing.

Does the love that veiled itself in human form on the cross for sinners such as us not motivate us to do exploits for God? Does the innocent blood that flowed not move us anymore?

Are we like those who guard the Crown Jewels in the Tower of London. They see these precious gems and crowns every day of their lives and they now take them for granted. They no longer hold that special WOW when first they set eyes on them.

Each new day is special. Eternity awaits, we are but a breath away. We have but a short time here in this body to do business with our God. Are we scared to be different? Do we still fear what man may do or say to us? Are we still not able to harness that resurrection power in our lives?

Listen to the Word. We did not choose this life for ourselves, God did! We truly deserve an eternity in Hell! Not one of us can deny that. Sometimes I fear we lose sight of the hellishness of Hell just as surely as we lose sight of the sinfulness of sin.

Christ in us, the hope of glory. We may feel weak and unable to serve Him. We may be more fruitful on our sickbed than ever we were in good health! I know from experience that I am more fervent in my prayers for Pastors and preachers now than ever I was.

As ones engrafted into the True Vine, let us drink freely of the sap and bathe in the light, joyfully bearing precious fruit for the Great Husbandman.

Abiding in Him is our strength. Through Christ we can do all things. We need not fear. If God be for us who can be against us? No weapon formed against us shall prosper. I am thy shield and exceeding great reward. I am your refuge and your strength in straits a present aid.

The promises of God are plentiful. Each one has a value and purpose that meets any need that we may encounter. He does not want us to do anything in our own strength. He tells us that without Him we can do nothing.

(How many more times am I going to have to learn this lesson?)

Listen to the gracious and loving words of our beloved Saviour. ‘Whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, He may give it you.’ Ask and you shall receive. God is not a liar. He will never let you down. He will never forsake you or cause you harm.

He does not look upon us in anger. He cannot. His wrath was turned upon Christ at Calvary. He looks upon us today through the eyes of love. That itself should be incentive enough for us to bear as much fruit as we can for Him, while it is day.

'These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.' Be a mirror for Christ today, reflect His image. God has chosen you. God has chosen you for a purpose. God has chosen you because He loves you. God has chosen you to live and to bear much fruit.