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By Their Fruit

Image of a bible with the words "make a faith journal using the bless method. by their fruit. May 3, 2023 Matthew 7:16-17"

Date: May 3, 2023

I use the BLESS method every morning for my devotional. 

B - Bible Verse
L - Listen for God's Word and pray
E - Explore the History and meaning
S - Study the Key Words or Phrases
S - Summarize and Share

You can read more about it by going to: What is a Faith Journal?

B - Bible Verse - Matthew 7:16-17 (NIV) "By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit."

L - Listen for God's Word and pray
Dear God, help me to understand the importance of bearing good fruit in my life. Show me what kind of fruit I am producing and how I can produce more good fruit. Help me to always recognize and avoid bad fruit in myself and others. Amen.

E - Explore the History and meaning
In this passage, Jesus is teaching his followers about how to recognize false prophets. He tells them that just as good trees produce good fruit and bad trees produce bad fruit, false prophets will be recognized by the fruit they produce. Jesus is emphasizing the importance of living a life that is consistent with one's beliefs and values, and how it can be recognized by the fruit that is produced.

S - Study the Key Words or Phrases

Fruit - This is a metaphor for the actions and behavior that come from a person's beliefs and values. It can be either good or bad depending on the person's character.

Grapes, thorn bushes, figs, thistles - These are the specific types of fruit and plants used in the metaphor to illustrate the idea that good trees produce good fruit and bad trees produce bad fruit.

False prophets - These are people who claim to speak for God, but in reality, they are leading people away from God by their teachings and behavior.

Recognize - This word emphasizes the importance of being able to discern the character and values of a person by their actions and the fruit they produce.

S - Summarize and Share
As I read this passage today, it reminds me of the importance of evaluating the fruit in my life. The scripture says that a good tree bears good fruit, and a bad tree bears bad fruit. In today's world, it can be easy to focus on outward appearances, accomplishments, and status, but the truth is that our fruit - the things that we produce and contribute to the world - is what really matters.

In my own life, I often find myself seeking validation and approval from others, but this verse reminds me that my focus should be on producing good fruit, not just trying to look good. It's a challenge to evaluate the fruit in my life honestly, to identify areas where I'm not producing good fruit, and to take steps to make positive changes.

But the good news is that we don't have to do this alone. We have God's guidance and strength to help us. When we allow God to work in us and through us, we can produce good fruit that brings glory to Him and blesses those around us.

So my call to action for myself and for you, my friends, is to take some time to reflect on the fruit in our lives. Are we producing good fruit, or are there areas where we need to make changes? Let's ask God to guide us and empower us to produce good fruit, so that we can make a positive impact in the world and bring glory to His name.

Bible Cross References:

Galatians 5:22-23 - "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law."

Luke 6:44 - "Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thorn bushes, or grapes from briers."

James 3:17 - "But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere."

Philippians 1:11 - "filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God."

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