Bearing Fruit

It is clear throughout the Gospels and the Epistles that believers should bear fruit. I do not think anyone would disagree with this notion. By in-large, I think most people would agree on loving your neighbor would be bearing fruit. Most people are aware of the fruits of the spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. So what is the source of the fruit? That is the question I would like to delve into today.

The Messiah, Yeshua, spoke many times on the issue to bear fruit. So did His precursor John. In Matthew 3:8 John said to bear fruit in keeping with repentance. John is telling us we must repent from our sins and we would bear fruit. John could only be speaking about repenting from our sins based on Torah. When we turn from sin and towards G-d and His ways, which is Torah, we bear fruit. If you don’t bear good fruit then you will be cut down and thrown into the fire (v10). Can John come as the precursor to Christ and speak a different way? Absolutely not.

In Matthew 7:15-20 below, Yeshua discusses good fruit and bad fruit. He says “every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”
“Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits.” Matthew 7:15-20
Then Yeshua continues and makes a profound statement:
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘L-rd, L-rd,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘L-rd, L-rd, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’ Matthew 7:21-23
As Yeshua finished saying every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire ( I believe a refining fire, but that is another discussion), He states that not everyone will enter the kingdom of heaven even if they did miraculous things in His name. Yeshua then says to them “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.” Wow. That is quite a statement to make. Yeshua makes it perfectly clear that those who do not practice Torah will not enter the kingdom of heaven. There is only one Torah. The root of the word used for lawlessness per Strong’s dictionary means destitute of (the Mosaic) law.
You might be saying to yourself that all I have to do is believe….have faith in Yeshua. Really? How did Yeshua answer the question of “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” in Luke 10:25? Yeshua answered “What is written in the Torah? How does it read to you?” The man answered “You shall love the L-rd your G-d with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” Yeshua’s response – “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.”
Notice that Yeshua did not say believe in me. Believing that G-d is G-d is a prerequisite to following Torah. This man, was already in the covenant, he was a Jew. Therefore, Yeshua’s response was the same over and over again. As Yeshua states it in John 14:15 – “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. Loving G-d and keeping His commandments are throughout the Torah (Ex 20:6, Deut 5:10, 6:5, 7:9, 7:13, 10:12, 11:1, 11:13, 22, 19:9, 30:6, & 16.
Please understand the meaning of following those two commandments. All of the Torah and the Prophets hang on those two commandments (Matt. 22:40). In other words, all the commandments are summarized in those two. The Torah is all about love, it is a covenant of love. Through this love we will be fruit.
But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. For some men, straying from these things, have turned aside to fruitless discussion, wanting to be teachers of the Torah, even though they do not understand either what they are saying or the matters about which they make confident assertions. But we know that the Torah is good, if one uses it lawfully… 1 Timothy 1:5-8
Paul taught Torah and told Timothy that the instruction of Torah is love with the purest of heart. Some were wanting to be teachers of the Torah, but they do not understand. Just like many people today. They do not understand Torah. They see it as a bunch of rules that were nailed to the cross, yet Scripture never says this. Paul tells Timothy that the Torah is good, but only IF it is used lawfully. In other words, being legalistic with the Torah, teaching that the Torah is what saves is not lawfully sound.
If you are of the flesh, you carry out the desires of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh so Paul tells us in Galatians 5. We are led by the Spirit and what does the Spirit do?
Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances. Ezekiel 36:26-27
So G-d is going to give us a new heart and put a spirit within you. He will remove the stony heart and give you a heart of flesh. How does one get a stony heart?
But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, and stopped their ears, that they should not hear. Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the Torah, and the words which the L-rd of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets: therefore came a great wrath from the L-rd of hosts. Zechariah 7:11-12
If you do not remember anything else from this article, please remember this. You get a stony heart by not listening to Torah.
So G-d will remove that heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. He is also going to put His spirit within you and cause you to walk in His statutes and ordinances. On this new heart, G-d is going to write His Torah on your heart (Jer. 31:33). That is the change in the “New Covenant”. G-d is going to write His Torah on your heart, not get rid of it. We are told in Proverbs 11:30 that the fruit of a righteous person is a tree of life. The fruit of one walking in the Spirit, in Torah, bears fruit.
Can G-d’s word return to Him void? No. Then how can the Torah be done away with or fulfilled? Psalm 1 sums it up really nicely for us:
Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the Torah of the L-rd, And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so, But are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the L-rd knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the ungodly shall perish.
If G-d’s word cannot return void then we must still delight in the Torah. We should meditate on it day and night. This picture created here in Psalms is similar to the Revelation 22:1-2:
Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of G-d and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month;
The water of life is Torah. Isaiah 2 and Micah 4 both state the Torah will flow from Zion, from Jerusalem in the Millennial Kingdom. With the Torah flowing the fruit will blossom. The tree of life from the Garden of Eden is there. Adam and Eve chose the tree that bore sin instead of choosing the tree of life. If you have not figured out yet what this source of the fruit is please go back and reread the article. The source is Torah. Plain and simple!
Until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is Hashem!