A good tree produces good fruit, and a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit, and a bad tree can’t produce good fruit. So every tree that does not produce good fruit is chopped down and thrown into the fire. Yes, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you can identify people by their actions. Matthew 7v17-20 NLT
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ Matthew7v21-23 NIV
God doesn’t want our words; he is not just looking for continual pouring outs of praise from us. What he cares about is our hands. Our actions. Our lifestyle. That is the key way we show love, both for God and for others. Yet how many of us can actually say we can be clearly recognised by our fruit? How many of us live a life of love? Yet throughout the Bible we are told time and time again that is what we have to do. A few examples include:
l 1st Corinthians 13v1-3(NIV) If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. 3 If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
2 Ephesians 5v1-2 (NIV) Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
l3 Galatians 5v13-14 (NIV) You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. The entire law is summed up in a single command: “Love your neighbour as yourself.”
It’s clear how we should live, but so often it gets neglected, with Satan telling us all we need to do is go to the meetings, say the words and go home and forget about it. So often we just can’t be bothered to make an effort. But ultimately, we are the body of Christ. I heard these words from the Casting Crown song ‘If we are the body’, and felt it really summed up the point I want to get across:
But if we are the Body
Why aren’t His arms reaching
Why aren’t His hands healing
Why aren’t His words teaching
And if we are the Body
Why aren’t His feet going
Why is His love not showing them there is a way
We are His earthly representatives. And if we want to see Him work in this generation, if we want to see people won for Him, if we want to see justice, equality and fairness, we need to play our part. We need to start sharing the love.
A while back there was a whole fuss in the papers about this Australian guy who went to shopping malls and offered free hugs to randomers passing by. The world is currently so lacking in little acts of love that that made headlines worldwide. That was one man, one act of love. This page will hopefully be viewed by many people. What can we do?