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Lesson # John 15:16-17
Study Material - John 15:16-17
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
16 Ye [humeis] have [eklegomai] not [ou] chosen [eklegomai] me [me] , but [alla] I [ego] have chosen [eklegomai] you [humas] , and [kai] ordained [tithemi] you [humas] , that [hina] ye [humeis] should go [hupago] and [kai] bring forth [phero] fruit [karpos] , and [kai] that your [humon] fruit [karpos] should remain [meno] : that [hina] whatsoever [hos] [an] [hostis] ye shall ask [aiteo] of the Father [pater] in [en] my [mou] name [onoma] , he may give it [didomi] you [humin] .
17 These things [tauta] I command [entellomai] you [humin] , that [hina] ye love [agapao] one another [allelon] . KJV-Interlinear
16 'You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask of the Father in My name, He may give to you. 17 'This I command you, that you love one another. NASB
More than a slave, one who knows nothing more than his job or his day to day existence, we are friends of God. That is those who pursue their spiritual life and advance to maturity.
It is not of our own choice, but of Gods choosing that we are what we are. So does that mean we have no say in our life? No.
In eternity past God looked down through the tunnels of time. I say tunnels because back then, there were an innumerable number of potential tunnels through which history might have unfolded.
God looked at each one of them. Each representing the possible variations of history given different decisions by God and creatures.
God evaluated all of them and made a choice (the divine decrees) on the one in which we are currently living. He saw all the thoughts and decisions of every human being in history, and in this timeline, we have the best possible outcome for each one of us.
God had a plan, in that plan He sent His Son to pay the price for our sins. Included in that plan was the disclosure of His intentions for salvation (sending Christ), and the rules for receiving salvation (faith in Christ).
God decided that all who choose for Christ by believing in Him, then those people would be saved. In this manner He chose us by designing the plan, implementing the plan, and seeing our faith even before we were born.
God did not interfere with our decision. He just knew the facts of history before they became history. In so knowing, He chose us, and then appointed us to become His and to live with Him forever.
He also had a purpose for every believer, and that was not to simply live as bumps on a log, but to become productive individuals. And that means productive in the spiritual sense, not the worldly sense. The world will pass away, so anything invested in this world will eventually be lost. The investment which will continue forever into eternity is from the spiritual assets (doctrine, time, and volition) which God gave to each one of us, and our use of them.
With wisdom, an investment yields profit and a better life, but when capital is not invested or utilized properly, then it is useless, unproductive, and no increased gain or benefit in life can be obtained from it. In effect God has given each one of us billions in cash (Bible doctrine). Those who are positive invest wisely and will reap huge rewards. Those who are negative will see their assets dwindle down to where they will have nothing, or very little, or less than what God originally gave them. Recall your parables of the rich man and the servants to whom he left his capital. The one who did nothing, lost all. His portion was redistributed to those who acted wisely.
Fruit is the result of your spiritual production. Spiritual fruit lasts forever. God credits you with what you have and He lets you keep it forever. Wouldn't it be nice if we could go to a bank, borrow some money, invest it, and then have the bank tell us that we could keep both the principle and the profit, the loan is canceled? Don't you suppose that the loan line would be rather long?
But here we have capital being given away by God, and how many look at this as an opportunity similar to the one just described? No too many unfortunately. Even though our spiritual opportunity is far more valuable than anything you could possibly encounter in life in this world.
' ... that whatever you ask of the Father ...'
That is pretty big blank check -- potentially. Potentially? Why so?
Because you get nothing when you ignore God. If you prefer the jungle (see the jungle chart in your chart book) over what God makes available to you, then your potential for any kind of a life is limited to the resources of the jungle and to the rules that apply to the jungle. Needless to say, those rules are unfair to everyone. Even those who appear to have an upper hand in the jungle environment of this world, will be betrayed by the jungle one day.
But for those who persevere in their spiritual growth, then the sky is the limit. And the sky continues on forever. We have blessings available to us which are 'exceedingly abundantly above and beyond anything we could ever ask or think.' That means beyond our imagination. That means a lot is out there just waiting for us to grow up!
Our biggest hindrance? Our own attitudes toward others in life. Love one another is the command. Why? Because we generally have more trouble come into our lives as a result of our interactions with people, than with anything else in life.
People can be jerks. People can be low life's. People can be cruel and rude and selfish. They can connive and plot. They can gossip against us. People can do many things that will tend to set us off. It is easy to get ticked off with people. And that is a barrier in ones spiritual growth.
Of the four biggest sources of problems in life (your own thinking, other people, bureaucracies, and natural disasters), you can see that people (yourself included) are involved in the first three. When nature hits us, well we generally look at that as a very impersonal event and not too many hate nature. Not really a target for hate. The usual target for hate in the event of a natural disaster, is either God or a 'poor me' or a 'why me' attitude.
So, overcome your failures when dealing with people and you have advanced a very long way in your spiritual goals. Only Bible doctrine in the soul is able to help you accomplish this.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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