March 23 Luke 3 7-9 NKJV

Some of the people who flocked to see John the Baptist and hear him preach were not sincere. Maybe curious. Or maybe they just wanted a glimpse of the “wild man” that lived in a wilderness and had a diet of locust and honey. Perhaps it was the message John preached that they were curious about. Regardless of their reasons for being there, their reasons did not include true repentance. The Holy Spirit revealed to John that some of the people were going through the right motions, but their heart was not following the motions. John called these people poisonous snakes and warned them to change their attitudes. He told them that if they were sincere in their repentance, then they would bear fruit that identified them as belonging to God. In Galatians 5:22-23, Paul tells us what these fruits are: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control.” 

In Luke 3:10-14, the people responded to John saying, “What, then, are we supposed to do?” John told them to have compassion on others, to be honest and fair, to not abuse power, and to be content. The simple truth is that when we truly give our hearts to Christ and make Him Lord, the evidence is seen in the changes that come about as a result of Him living within us. If Christ had taken up residence in the people following John, they would have had compassion on those who are in need, the tax collectors would have been fair and honest in the taxes they collected, and the soldiers would not abuse the power given them in their position and they would have been content with their wages.

Today, people still go through the motions without actually having a heart change. Without true repentance there is no salvation and that person is still lost without Christ – heading for an eternity in Hell. It isn’t up to use to judge others as to their fruit or lack thereof. The question we need to ask is, “Is there fruit in my life that gives evidence of Christ living within me?”

God, show me the fruit of Christ living in me. Show me the fruit that needs cultivating and help me to grow and produce abundant and rich fruit as evidence of You working in my life. May the fruit that I bear lead others to you.  

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