By Their Fruit You Will Recognize Them…

I’ve been struggling with something for a while now but have just remained prayerful about my frustrations. While I still continue in an attitude of prayer, I’ve decided to publicly express my disgust.

 

It has to do with the behavior of some Christians in the midst of adversity. I AM SHOCKED to say the least. How some Christians can behave the way they do and not feel convicted is beyond me. Am I perfect? Not hardly. But I know the conviction of the Holy Spirit and am thankful for conviction that brings repentance when my emotions get the best of me and I respond in the flesh. But in day to day life, in churches, in the marketplace, in social clubs and in social media Christians are displaying fruit. Sadly not all of it is good. And rather than seeing repentance for this “not good fruit,” it continues and continues. This I do not understand.

 

What Others Say About It

Martin Luther King Jr. said “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

 James Lane Allen said “Adversity does not build character, it reveals it.”

 

What I Say About It

If you really want to see someone’s true heart, just let adversity strike and watch how they handle it. Do they display godliness? Even if we don’t agree with someone, we still should respond in a godly way. It doesn’t mean we’ll be perfect in all we do, but we must seek God daily to help us have a godly response.

Even if someone hurts us, we should still respond in a Christ-like manner. Even if all HELL breaks loose in our lives, we should never seek to tear others down, lure others into messy behavior, try to divide the Body of Christ or seek revenge. And we certainly shouldn’t do it under the guise of suddenly befriending people we never seemed to have time for in the past, solely so we can manipulate them to “our side.”

There is only ONE SIDE we should be concerned with… GOD’S SIDE.

IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU. It’s about displaying Christ through your life. Our life is meant to be a witness… on our GOOD DAYS and on our BAD DAYS… when everything goes RIGHT (our way) and when it doesn’t… SO THAT OTHERS MAY KNOW HIM AND FIND ETERNAL LIFE.

We should display good fruit… not ROTTEN fruit. Rotten fruit smells and its appalling. Why would anyone want to be a Christian if the only ones they know stink?

The only “stinking” Christians should be doing is from BURNING FLESH (submission to God/dying to self.)  This is fragrant to the Lord. 

But ROTTEN fruit is another story.

If you’re going to insist on doing it your way and displaying rotten fruit, STOP DOING IT “IN THE NAME OF JESUS.”

 

What the Word of God Says About It

With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness.  Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be. James 3:9-10

“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Matt 7:15-16

Avoid such godless chatter, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, and their talk will eat its way like gangrene…They are upsetting the faith of some. 2 Tim 2:16-18

Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. Rom 16:17-18

 

 A Final Exhortation:

Therefore, dear friends…make every effort to have him find you at peace, without spiritual stains or blemishes. Think of our Lord’s patience as an opportunity for people to be saved. This is what our dear brother Paul wrote to you about, using the wisdom God gave him. He talks about this subject in all his letters. Some things in his letters are hard to understand. Ignorant people and people who aren’t sure of what they believe distort what Paul says in his letters the same way they distort the rest of the Scriptures…so be on your guard not to be carried away by the deception …then you won’t fall from your firm position. But grow in the good will and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 3:14-18

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.” Luke 23:34

“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much again. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the selfish. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. Luke 6:32-36

 

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Just after I published this blog post, a friend (Christine Juarez) replied with this:

When adversity strikes, it is either a TRAINING OR A TEST. If its a training, LEARN. If its a test PASS!

 

Advice if you’ve experienced ROTTEN FRUIT: https://maryloveslife.wordpress.com/2010/10/15/a-word-from-the-lord-about-noise-pollution/

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About Mary L'Esperance Held
http://www.maryloveslife.org

3 Responses to By Their Fruit You Will Recognize Them…

  1. Good post. I Llike your title and I liked the wolf in sheep’s clothing. Your life story was good. Keep writing.

  2. Duane Fronek says:

    Very well put.These blogs give me goosebumps, seriously. Keep up God’s work.

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