Title: Called to Bear Fruit
Scripture: John 15:12-17 (NLT)
This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. This is my command: Love each other.
Explanation: One of the most gracious things about Jesus is His clarity. In our passage today, we clearly see five things:
- His desire-sacrificial love is to be the norm
- Our relationship-friendship
- The loop we are included in-what the Father tells Him
- The honor-He chose us
- The appointment-produce lasting love fruit
We can talk like a Christian faster than we can act like one. Loving in a sacrificial way is miles beyond what most of us find fun. In this passage, Jesus is not going to “Hallmark” it for us. He tells us that we have to lay down our wants and conveniences to serve others. He clearly spells out that it requires extreme sacrifice, because He references following His example of laying down His life for others. He is calling us as friends to get on board with this method of living. This is more than being nice at the four way stop or offering someone our cart at Aldi for free. In modern language, Jesus is asking us to be in a clique with Him and the Father, and start changing the world with radical, painful, hard, inconvenient love. The only thing that will effectively change the world is unapologetic, brazen love. He knows it will cost us, pain us, and stretch us, but nevertheless He says, “This is my command.”
- Many times, it takes “overcorrection” for a time, to change a pattern. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal any overcorrection you may need to start bearing lasting love fruit.
- Is there someone in your life who would be totally surprised by a radical action of love on your part?
- What is the most extreme situation in your life that causes you to feel unloving
thoughts? Jesus calls you, friend, so talk to Him as a friend and ask for His help. He wants to be your strength. Ask in Jesus’s name. He promises power.