In my last blog (His Workmanship), I shared some thoughts from Andrew Murray about being God’s workmanship and being “in Christ” by His work. We become a “new creation” when we are joined to Christ, and bear much fruit as we stay connected to Him. Let’s explore these truths a bit further.
Have you ever thought about how a vine produces fruit? It’s certainly not by thinking or effort on the part of the vine. Fruitfulness comes naturally as the branches are connected to the vine, if it has good soil, moisture, and care.
According to Jesus’ teaching, He is the vine, His Father is the husbandman. I am a branch. (John 15:1-5) Fruitfulness comes when I abide in Him – when I stay vitally connected with Him. My Father is in charge of pruning and lifting up in order to increase fruitfulness.
But all of this is “of God.” Of God I am in Christ Jesus. Of God, I am a branch in the Vine. Of God I am a new creation in Christ. I, “who formerly was dead in sins – I who formerly was far off, apart from the covenant and the promises – am now “in Christ” by the calling and choosing and creating power of God.
Jesus said, “I have chosen you and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain.” (John 15:16) So what is my part? To believe Him. To say, “Yes, Lord! Amen! So be it!” To stay connected to the Vine. And to be thankful and cooperate with His grace which mightily works within me.
I did not choose Him – He chose me! Not because of anything good in me, but according to His sovereign power and plan – that I might bear fruit – and that He might manifest His glorious love, mercy, grace, and power, in and through me. What a high calling! What a privilege! What a blessing!
Mary Jo Nutting