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May 6 – What is at stake

“For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.” – 2 Peter 1:8-9 

Scripture reading: John 15:1-11

If you have a fruit tree, you will want to see plenty of fruit. And if it produces little or no fruit, it will be pulled out and replaced with another tree. Well, the same is true with spiritual ‘fruit.’ We know from Galatians 5 that the Holy Spirit produces fruit in the believer. Indeed, in John 15, Jesus told us that if a person abides in Him and He in them, they will bear much fruit. We know from Ephesians 4:11-12 also that Christ gave office-bearers to the church that believers might become mature in faith.

It follows from all this, then, that there should be fruitfulness and effectiveness in anyone who professes faith in Christ. We should make progress in the gospel. We should be able to look back and see growth in the qualities that we looked at yesterday. And the absence of growth should give us great cause for concern.

Now, it can be the case, especially if we have a tender conscience, that we struggle to see our own progress/fruitfulness. That is where other believers can help us. So, be sure to ask other mature believers if they have seen you growing. But if you know and believe that Christ redeemed you “from all lawlessness and [is purifying] for Himself a people for His own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14), implore the Lord for His help in Christian growth.

Suggestions for prayer

Confess those times when there has not been the pursuit of growth. Give thanks that your salvation is secure in Christ. Ask the Lord to give you the desire to grow in fruitfulness.

Rev. Andre Holtslag is a graduate of Mid-America Reformed Seminary in Dyer, Indiana (2007). At the present time he serves the Reformed Church of Avondale, which is in the city of Auckland, New Zealand, and is one of the Reformed Churches in New Zealand (RCNZ). Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. This devotional is made available by the Nearer To God Devotional team, who also make available in print, for purchase, at

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