Wednesday, February 9, 2011

"The Root Of the Fruit"

We do not come to Christ through prayer. We come to prayer through Christ. "Having, therefore brethren, boldness therefore to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus" (Hebrews 10:19).
We do not come to Christ through righteousness. We come to righteousness through Christ. "But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us... righteousness" (I Corinthians 1:30).
We do not come to Christ through holiness. We come to holiness through Christ. "Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish" (Ephesians 5:25-27).
We do not come to Christ through godliness. We come to godliness through Christ. "His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness" (II Peter 1:3).
We do not come to Christ through love. We come to love through Christ. "The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us" (Romans 5:5).
The list could go on and on of spiritual graces that are the fruit of the Root, that is, of the person and work of the Lord Jesus. The order must never be reversed in our understanding and application because our Savior is "the author and finisher of our faith" (Hebrews 12:2). He is "the power of God" (I Corinthians 1:24). He is our "sanctification and redemption" (I Corinthians 1:30). Without Him, we can "do nothing," but through Him, we can "do all things" (John 15:5; Philippians 4:13). The Lord Jesus is our life, and we are spiritually inanimate apart from His vital and dynamic presence within us. "I am... the life; To live is Christ" (John 14:6; Philippians 1:21).
When, in our reading of the New Testament, we encounter the commands of God to trust and obey, our first response must be to rejoice in Lord Jesus as the indwelling motivator and enabler of obedience. We "live through Him," that is, we do everything of eternal substance and worth by "the power of His might" (I John 4:9; Ephesians 6:10). In this blessed light, the New Testament commands become pure joy in our hearts and minds because they offer opportunity to know and trust our Savior. Christ is the root, the true Vine, and the everflowing life whereby we are the branches upon which the fruit of Spirit hangs in bountiful harvest as we look to "the Author and Finisher of our faith" (Colossians 2:7; John 15:1).
"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them."
(Ephesians 2:10)

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