Is your church doing to be or being to do? We ended Paul’s prayer for the Colossians last week with the phrase, “unto all pleasing”. We continue his prayer with, “being fruitful in every good work…”(Col. 1:10).
Pleasing the Father, bearing fruit, good work…”Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”(John 15:8).
How do the good works of the world differ from the good work of the follower of Christ? One pleases self being born out of a desire to feel good about oneself. The other pleases the Lord being born out of a spirit filled with the fullness of God and pointing to His goodness and character.
“…being fruitful…” A believer in Christ is full of fruit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance…”(Gal. 5:22,23a). Notice there is only one fruit made up of nine kinds of seeds. Those receiving life in the Spirit of God through faith in Christ are admonished to, “also walk in the Spirit.” This fruit, those in Christ are to bear, is His very character, and it begins with the knowledge of His love for us. “And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.”(Eph. 3:19).
Those who are in Christ are given the fullness of God through the Holy Spirit. He plants each seed of His character in our hearts beginning with the knowledge of His love. This knowledge of love blooms into joy bringing forth the peace of God that reigns in our hearts through the trials we face. We patiently wait/trust in Him to walk with us in gentleness because of His goodness. Experiencing His goodness waters our faith, the conviction He is who He says He is and does what He says He will do. He is meek, acting according to who He is and remembering who we are, and deals with us accordingly, even as we are to be with one another.
Our heavenly Father has put this fruit in us to bear to others. This is the good work we are to do because of our being filled with His fruit. What we have learned of Him, we are to follow. What He has born in us we are to bear to others.
Peter puts it this way: “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature…giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance: and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness charity; For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (2Peter 1:3-8).
“…in every good work…””Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” “Thou shalt love the Lord they God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind…And…Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works.” (John 6:28,29; Matt. 22:37,39; Heb. 10:24). Knowing this: “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.” No matter the work if it is not motivated by the love of Christ, “..and have not charity, I am nothing…it profiteth me nothing.”(Taken from 1Cor. 13).
Being in Christ you live by the Spirit. You have His character in you. He, living in you, cannot help but produce good work, a work that glorifies the Father. Being does.
How might you encourage your local body of Christ to love and good works?
Heavenly Father, You have given us all we need to bear fruit unto your glory. Show us how to be an encouragement to your body in love and good works. May we bear the righteous eternal fruit of the Spirit to a world feasting on the temporary fruits of sinful pleasure.