“I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing…. Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.” (John 15:5,16)
“These are the best apples in the world!” exclaimed Savannah.
“You like those, eh?” asked Grandpa Gooberman.
“Yes, I do!” replied Savannah, with bits of apple flying out of her mouth.
With a twinkle in his eye, Grandpa Gooberman said, “Yup. Sure was a good harvest. I picked them right off of the pear tree this year.”
Savannah stopped chewing, mid-bite. “You did what?”
Grandpa Gooberman took out his red handkerchief and appeared to be blowing his nose. “I picked them off the pear tree!”
“How could you get apples from a pear tree?” asked Savannah.
“Why do you ask? You don’t think it’s possible?”
“No, way! That’s impossible!”
Of course, Grandpa Gooberman did not pick the apples off a pear tree. But why would he tell his granddaughter that? It was because he wanted to teach her a lesson about her relationship with God. Grandpa Gooberman asked Savannah to run and go get his Bible. As she opened the old, worn Bible, she saw that it was full of verses that were underlined and had lots of notes in the margins.
Grandpa Gooberman turned the pages to the book of John. He wanted to show her two verses. The first verse was John 15:5. In John 15, we are described as branches and Jesus is the Vine. Jesus was using this description as a way of teaching that if you really do have a relationship with Him, you will produce a certain kind of fruit. Just like an apple tree produces apples, and just like a pear tree produce pears, a Christian must and will produce fruit that is consistent with Christ.
The second verse that Grandpa Gooberman wanted Savannah to see was verse 16. He showed her in the verse that God has chosen people, and that He has special purposes in mind for them: to save them and to help them produce good works. He reminded her that the book of Ephesians teaches us that good works do not save us, but that, as the book of James teaches us, good works are always a fruit of salvation.
So, the whole point of Grandpa Gooberman’s lesson was to remind Savannah that if she was trusting in Christ as the only way of salvation, then she should be bearing the “fruit” of good works. Just as it is impossible for a pear tree to produce apples, it is impossible for a non-Christian to do good works that please God.
God wants every believer to produce the good works that are appropriate (fitting) for a child of God.
» Am I really trusting in God for salvation?
» What “good works” does the Bible command us to do?
» Is my life marked by the fruit of Christian?