muchfruit# – 06
MUCH FRUIT – GREATER WORKS – WHATEVER YOU SAY
The MUCH FRUIT of John 15:8 has at least two things in common with the GREATER WORKS of John 14:12– PRAYER and the GLORY of God. “You shall ask what you will and it shall be done – By this is my Father glorified that you bear MUCH FRUIT” – John 15:7 & 8; “whatever you shall ask in my name that will I do that the Father may be glorified in the SON” – John 14:13. The same theme is repeated in Mark 11:20-24, where the amazed disciples observe the result of Christ’s curse of the fig tree and our Lord promises – “whatever you desire when you pray believe that you receive them and you shall have them” – Mark 11:24.; kenneth Hagin
Faith that was clearly implied in John 14 and 15 is explicitly emphasised in Mark 11. It is NOT quantitative faith but qualitative faith – “Jesus said, ’Have faith in God’”. Kenneth Hagin says that this is best rendered, “Have the faith of God” and he was right but then he distorts it by making it equal to God’s faith and failing to see that our Lord is speaking of faith as a gift, its source being God. Biblically there is no such thing as human faith or human belief. Faith is always a divine deposit as John Wesley discovered when he felt his heart being “strangely warmed”, and he was truly converted. For this reason it is as foolish to speak of the faith of atheists as it is to follow the “Word of Faith” teachers with their “faith prosperity” doctrines of which undoubtedly the late Oral Roberts was a major promoter – see http://www.cwm.org.au/latest-cetf/367-6808 Alternatively you can read this and many other interesting articles in the hard copy of CETF # 68 or download a PDF copy at www.cwm.org.au
John, the gospel writer says we can have what we “pray” while Mark declares we have what we “say”. Both are true but what is often missed, by misapplication or oversight, is the fact that our abiding in the vine (living in Christ and His Word living in us) actually shapes us so that our desire becomes conformed to the desire of Christ and so we pray or say according to that conformity. If you are living in Christ and His Word is living in you His will becomes your desire and that is what you pray or say. So, far from the imposition of your will or desire upon God or upon His world, which James tells us is “asking to consume it upon our lusts” (James 4:3), we graciously submit to His Will and pray and act as James, the apostle, elsewhere instructs us always to say – “If the Lord will ….” (James 4:15).
Prayer is designed not to get God to do something but rather, through communion with Him, conforming the pray-er to the will and way of God (the image of Christ) so that God can use us to do His Will.
More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of – Alfred Lord Tennyson – 1809-1892.
|Make me a captive, Lord.
And then I shall be free;
Force me to render up my sword,
And I shall conq’ror be.
I sink in life’s alarms
When by myself I stand,
Imprison me within Thine arms,
And strong shall be my hand.
|My heart is weak and poor
Until it master find:
It has no spring of action sure,
It varies with the wind;
It cannot freely move
Till Thou hast wrought its chain;
Enslave it with Thy matchless love,
And deathless it shall reign.
|My power is faint and low
Till I have learned to serve:
It wants the needed fire to glow,
It wants the breeze to nerve;
It cannot drive the world
Until itself be driven;
Its flag can only be unfurled
When Thou shalt breathe from heaven.
|My will is not my own
Till Thou hast made it Thine;
If it would reach the monarch’s throne
It must its crown resign;
It only stands unbent
Amid the clashing strife,
When on Thy bosom it has leant,
And found in Thee its life.
Tomorrow is New Year’s Day in Australia, so from Brisbane, in Queensland, Kathleen and I and our family and the CWM-Fellowship wish you a blessed time however you meet to celebrate the end of an old year and the dawn of 2015, which could be our last on this earth.
My next blog on this topic will be the penultimate. I think I am getting the idea of BLOGS and FACE BOOKS. Watch this space.
God bless you – Philip L. Powell.