Fruit of D'Vine is the name of our monthly newsletter, based upon the biblical truth that each Christian is a “partaker of the divine nature” (2 Pet. 1:4-KJV), and that those who abide in Christ, the Vine, and are thus living truth, will bear godly fruit just as he did.
What Do You Do With Your Head To Get Your Mouth Open
Don’t you just love WORDS?! How fascinating that the Creator of Life decided to use little clusters of letters as His means of communication with Him, and prescribed the same means for us humans to connect at the deepest levels of our hearts. Scripture makes it clear that WORDS have the power of life and death. WORDS can inspire a person to incredible feats, or WORDS can rip out one’s heart. Satan’s lies can destroy, while God’s Truth always heals and blesses anyone who believes it.
Have you noticed the haphazard way in which so many people today, even those in the public eye, use words, and how bad their grammar is? That’s because the Devil, the “father of lies,” is doing his best to cripple people’s communication skills, and his primary goal is to stop people from (a) reading, (b) understanding, and (c) sharing with others the written Word of God. Such folks need to stop laying around so much and perservere so as to improve their comunication skills so they can convince others to follow the Lord Jesus. And they can do so knowing that one benefit of being born again is having some friendly guardian angles, each of which can spell. Can you?
Cultivating Your Garden of Grace
The ages-old debate in Christianity continues to rage on. Do our guardian angels have favorite TV shows? Oops, I mean, does a Christian do the works of God in order to be saved, to maintain (not forfeit) his salvation, or to gain any particular favor with God? Or does he work diligently, simply because he recognizes God’s amazing grace in saving him, and wants to show Him how thankful he is for the indescribable gift of salvation?
In which of those two scenarios would a believer be more likely to “work heartily as unto the Lord,” give ”cheerfully,” “go the second mile,” etc.? Well, how about you? Compare doing work for an impersonal boss, work you must do in order to earn your pay, with working for someone who saved you from drowning, took you into his own family, and is lavishing his goodness upon you. Surely it is easier to put your whole heart into working for the latter.
Are You Letting Your Conscience Be Your Guide?
Were I to put a sub-title on this piece, it would be: Think About What You’re Thinking About. You might think it is impossible not to do that, but I’m pretty sure I’m not the Lone Ranger when it comes to "What was I thinking?!” or “Another opportunity to be wrong and I took it.”
What are we thinking, day by day, moment by moment, when things are going great, when everything is hitting the fan, when we are alone, when we are with others, when we abound, and when we are abased? We gotta be aware of the thoughts and images running around in our gray matter, so that we do not fall prey to “stinkin’ thinkin.’” Because thoughts are the seeds of our words and deeds, thinking God’s thoughts is the key to speaking and acting according to His Word.
Signed, Sealed and Delivered
One topic that comes up continuously is the simple but profoundly vital question: “How do I know if I am truly saved?” That’s kind of important, right? Imagine how debilitating it would be if you were not TOTALLY POSITIVE that you are saved, sealed, sanctified, and guaranteed everlasting life in Paradise NO MATTER WHAT you do in this life after you are born again. I assert that such doubt shrouding your heart would basically ruin your Christian life. And yet that is where far too many Christians are today, way down deep in their hearts.
Although he seldom emphasizes Romans 10:9-10, the Moody professor answers this critical question by rightly stating that God promises that if one makes Jesus his Lord he is guaranteed salvation—and God doesn’t lie. And, he adds, if one is really saved, his life will evidence the fruit of the spirit. Not “necess-celery.” You and I know that it takes a split second to forever “be born again of incorruptible seed,” but after that you must be “transformed by the renewing of your mind.” There are countless Christians who have never “put on the mind of Christ,” and whose behavior is thus virtually indistinguishable from non-Christians. The difference is between one’s STANDING as a son of God and his STATE of fellowship with God.