His Water Does Cause Growth & Fruit

July 16, 2013

Friends,
Over the last few days the temperature has been almost 30 degrees cooler than before that, and we’ve had some good heavy rain. What a blessing when July is usually so hot here and when there has often been a terrible lack of rain across the land. I’ve been thanking the Lord for it since last week.

There are so many things to be thankful for even in a cruel and fallen world full of disasters and pain. While listening to the distresses of many people yesterday, almost everyone was still able to find something to be thankful for. And many agreed that the Lord is so good, including by bringing us the cool and rainy weather.

This morning while soaking in God’s beautiful Word and thanking Him again for it, Isa. 44:3,4 caught my eye: “For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground. I will pour My Spirit upon your offspring and My blessing on your descendants. They shall sprout up among the grass like willows beside flowing streams.” This is not only about the favor the Lord bestows upon the physical earth, but also about the glorious privileges we receive from Him through His Spirit He gives us.

Meditating on these two verses led me to think about His goodness to the land and to us. Then I thought, what if God never gave rain to the land? Well, nothing would grow. And if nothing grew, there would be no crops, and no plants, and therefore no animals, and therefore no food, and thus no life. It is water that brings life. Life originates from water. No wonder the Word of God often equates Christ, the Spirit, and the Word with water –cleansing water that washes away sin, pure water that causes Life, spiritual life.

Yes, I know this is fundamental. But the thoughts washed into me in a new way and I reflected on the fact that life automatically causes growth. If there is no growth, it means there is no life there. If there is no growing, whether with vegetation, animals, or human beings, then it is not possible that there is life within. The thing must produce something, even if, because of some abnormality, it is stunted. If nothing comes from it, not even a leaf or vein of greenery, then it’s dying, and will die. If an animal or human baby stops growing, and it remains a baby at 25 years old, then there is something dreadfully wrong. In fact, it’s not possible –not in body, even if in intelligence.

So what about spiritually? Can a person have the Spirit of Christ and yet remain stagnant in the knowledge of God and in the production of “the fruit of the Spirit”? (Gal. 5:22,23) No. It’s not possible. Jesus is the Life. He is spiritual life. This Life is the path of Eternal Life. Abiding in the Vine and having Him within us will automatically bring growth spiritually. We must and we will grow. We must and we will produce. We will produce God’s character little by little by little –until we have grown into a huge tree that produces increasingly beautiful fruit, increasingly tasty to a hungry world.

Therefore, may all who claim to belong to Christ examine themselves. (2 Cor. 13:5) Is there growth and fruit? It must be happening daily. Physically speaking, no plant or animal or human stops for a day and says, “Oh, I think I’ll take a break today and not accept life. I don’t want to grow today or produce anything.” It can’t happen. The minute a living thing would choose to do that (if it could choose), it would start to decay and die. A person can, however, do this spiritually, but he would have to quickly repent, and if he did it very often, or waited too long to repent, it would be too late. Decay, disease, withering, and death would set in, and he would die. For his carelessness and rebellion, he would get cut off from being in Christ (John 15:2), wither completely (v. 6), and get thrown into the fire. (same verse)

We must remain in Christ. If we do, we will grow and produce. If we don’t –because we allow ourselves to wander off onto a different path (a sinful, slothful, false, worldly path)– the Life within us will drain out of us. For this Life, just like any other life, must flourish within the body, mind, and spirit, allowed to function as it should to create growth and fruit.

How does a branch of Christ’s remain in Him? We do so by meditating on Him and His words. And His words come through God’s Word as the Spirit Himself teaches us what He is saying there. Then we must put to practice what He instructs. If we do not do any one of these things, then spiritual life will not be flowing through us, we will get diseased, we will get cut off, and we will die. And it will be an eternal death. This is why Jesus says in John 6:53, “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no Life in you.”

Praise God, though, that we have taken “the free gift of the Water of Life” (Rev. 22:17) and are remaining in Him so that we are increasingly growing and producing His life amongst a decaying world. It is a blessing like that of cool, refreshing rain, yet infinitely more so.

Sincerely,
with love,
Rachel

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