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Spring has sprung! What a beautiful time of year. At our house, we like to plant a little vegetable garden. We plant tomatoes, lettuce, zucchini and other plants that are easy to grow. We also have four fruit trees. The apples are in full bloom while the Italian plum is still holding out. We look forward to seeing and eating the fruit from these trees.
This reminds me of a verse in the Bible;
“Filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” -Philippians 1:11
This verse is a part of a prayer to God, by the Apostle Paul, on behalf of the believers in ancient Philippi (Phil. 1:9-11). But this is a prayer for us as well. It is a clear expectation throughout the New Testament that followers of Christ are to be filled with the fruit of righteousness. The Apostle is speaking of a righteousness that is exhibited externally. The fruit of righteousness is the fruit that righteousness produces. This fruit is to be seen in the many acts of kindness and service to which all believers in Christ are called.
How is the believer to live a fruitful life? There is only one way. This kind of life only comes by depending on Christ. This point was made by Christ himself in the last moments he spent with his disciples before his crucifixion. Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener…Remain with me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine you are the branches. If a man remains in me and i in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15: 1, 45).
As we marvel at the new growth all around us, spend some time time with the Savior. It is the only way to consistently live out our call to be righteous.
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