May 26, 2018
THE THINGS OF CHRIST THAT GIVE US JOY!
The disciples were grieved to hear that Jesus would soon be leaving them. So Jesus shared with them the “things” that would belong to them because of His sacrifice. “These things” now belong to all those who abide in Christ, so that His “overflowing joy” abides in them.
What are “these things” of Christ that bring us joy?
1) HIS PLACE. Jesus told His disciples not to be troubled because He was preparing a place for them to live with Him forever (John 14:1-3).
2) HIS PATER. The place that Jesus would prepare would be with His Father (Greek: “Pater”) (John 14:1-6).
3) HIS PARACLETE. Jesus told His disciples that He would ask the Father to send them “another Advocate” (“parakletos”), which is the Holy Spirit to live in them (John 14:12-31).
4) HIS PRESENCE. Jesus told them the parable of the Vine and Branches, that He was the Vine and they the branches, and that they would only be able to bear spiritual fruit by abiding in Him. In this way, Christ would abide in them and they would abide in Him (John 15:1-11).
Happiness is based on favorable happenings. But joy, overflowing joy, is found in “these things” of Christ. His Place, His Pater, His Paraclete, and His Presence, these are the things of Christ that bring us overflowing joy!
May 26, 2015
The abiding life begins with salvation, yet here in John 15, Jesus is speaking of the abundant life that becomes evident as we continue to abide in Him. We understand that our salvation is accomplished by Christ and by no effort of our own. Yet, after receiving this salvation through faith, we often attempt to live the Christian life by our own self-effort. But just as we are saved by grace through faith, so shall we continue to live by “abiding” in God’s grace through faith. Wherever we are not exhibiting love, joy peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, in that very place we are not abiding in Christ. Abiding, we rest in Christ, drawing on His life-giving power and presence even in the midst of life’s storms. We are not called to imitate Christ, but to abide in Him, so that His life is manifest in ours.
May 26, 2012
Christians are not called to imitate Christ. They are called to abide in Him, so that His life is manifest in theirs. Our effort is not to do Christlike things, but to tenaciously cling to the Vine, so that His life flows through us to produce spiritual fruit.
May 26, 2011
Our power for witnessing comes from the One who testifies about Jesus to us. The Spirit doesn’t speak of Himself. He speaks of Christ. When we depend on His power, we bear spiritual fruit.